Practice of Somapathy
Its practical application to the various diseases of the human body
By Chas. H. Murray, A. B., D. O.
The Practice of Somapathy: reprint of 1913 edition in PDF format.
86 pages with 25 illustrations. Describes the treatment of various diseases/conditions using hot/cold therapy of specific spinal and abdominal areas, massage of specific spinal and abdominal areas. Nutritional recommendations for each disease/condition
Principles of Somapathy
The object to be attained in treating human ills according to this science are as follows: (1) To remove all muscular contractions, (2) to stimulate spinal and other nerve centers, (3) to inhibit spinal and other nerve centers, (4) to relieve anemia and hyperemia of the spinal cord. This conclusion has been formed after giving over thirty thousand treatments and carefully noting their effects on hundreds of patients.
In the practice of osteopathy, when we wish to relieve pain or quiet an organ which is doing an excessive amount of overwork, we inhibit certain nerve centers, usually in the spine. This is most often accomplished by some form of treatment, generally pressure, applied as near as possible to the nerve center, in the spine, of the organ in question. In case we desire to lessen the number of nerve impulses passing from any section of the cord to any given organs, we hold the spine with a strong grip, partially lifting the body, as in figure 1. Or we may place a book under the spine, requesting the patient to rest heavily upon it, as in figure 2. We will say, in passing, that both of these treatments are for the same purpose as applied at this point of the spine, and are for the purpose of quieting the peristalic action of the bowels in cases of excessive diarrhea. When we wish to quiet the action of the heart we apply steady pressure at the third and fourth dorsal vertebra, as in figure 3. When we wish to stimulate nerve centers and thus increase the action of certain organs or functions we deliver a series of thrusts over the spine, as in figure 13.
Somapathy is from the Greek; soma meaning body, and pathos meaning suffering, the whole word meaning, literally, body suffering. This is to be distinguished from osteopathy, meaning bone suffering; allopathy, meaning other suffering; or homeopathy, meaning like suffering. A doctor of osteopathy is a doctor of bone suffering, while a doctor of Somapathy is a doctor of body suffering.
Somapathy owes a great deal to osteopathy and gives to her full credit for teaching the value of spinal inhibition and spinal stimulation, but Somapathy offers a better method and technique in obtaining these two important therapeutic factors, and by these methods secures them for a greater length of time. The technique is so simple that it can easily be applied by those who simply follow plain directions.
This part, as set forth in this book, will consist of massage as a preparatory treatment, for the purpose of loosening muscles as an osteopath or masseur does. These massage treatments will first be illustrated by original photographs and followed by a few pages of explanations of the massage. Afterwards will be placed the technique of the use of heat and cold as it is employed in Somapathy.
Massage has been employed for thousands of years in alleviating human ills. In all ages, among all peoples, its beneficial effects have been known. It stimulates the nerves, promotes circulation and assists elimination. Massage makes an excellent preparatory treatment and the application of the heat and cold continues the curative effects started by the massage. When the treatment is given as directed it will be found much more effective than any manual treatment known.
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