BRMI

Podcast # 15 - An Anthroposophical Medicine Approach to Illness

by Dr. Steven Johnson

About Dr. Steven Johnson

Dr. Steven Johnson has been trained in internal medicine at the Med Center of Central Massachusetts at the University of Massachusetts and served as co-chief resident of Internal Medicine. 

Dr. Steven Johnson is currently the President of the Physicians Association for Anthroposophical Medicine. Dr. Johnson also serves as the Director of the Integrative Oncology and Mistletoe Training Program and is currently co-authoring a book on this subject. 

Dr. Steven Johnson is co-Founder of the Foundation for Health Creation. As Director of Anthroposophic and Integrative Medicine an Camphill Village, he oversees and cares for a community of over 240 people comprising of adults with special needs. In addition, he is also the Director of Collaborative Medical Consulting providing local and long distance medical consulting as well as consulting Integrative and Anthroposophic pharmacies. 

 With training in Anthroposophic, Biological/Regenerative medicine and Osteopathic medicine and extensive training in European Integrative clinics, Dr. Johnson is one of the foremost experts in this field also touting over 25 years also teaching and lecturing internationally. 

Anthroposophic Medicine

Foundation for Health Creation

My Message…

The beauty in Anthropsohic Medicine is found by bridging the physiological medicinal world with soul and spirit in a very clear and specific way.

Dr. Steven Johnson

 Episode Highlights with Dr. Steven Johnson

Dr. Steven Johnson – Anthroposophic Medicine

Dr. Steven Johnson’s interest in Anthroposophic Medicine was first sparked by learning of its focus on adaptive resilience and salutogenesis.

  • The beauty is found by bridging the physiological medicinal world with soul and spirit in a very clear and specific way.

  • The most important part of Anthroposophic Medicine is respecting the individuality of the patient, the idea that all patients are different and even different within themselves at different points in life. 

  • Warmth is a key part of wellness and regeneration, for instance a child that has had the flu or another illness where a fever is allowed to safely run its course, the children’s immunity is strengthened because the “healthy inflammation” is not suppressed. 

  • Coolness can also be beneficial, for instance if someone has a metabolic headache due to too much warmth within the body, in this case metabolic warmth.  This metabolic warmth can be cooled through things such as either an iron supplement, herbal chamomile root, amongst others. 

 

Anthroposophic Medicine was first practiced in the 1920s by Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925) along with with Dr. Ita Wegman (1876–1943) with the first Anthroposophic Medical clinic was also opened in Doornoth, Switzerland.

It is:

  • Strongly based in alchemy, resembling ancient Ayurvedic practices

  • Looks at health and disease in terms of earth air fire and water

  • Focuses on maintaining biological rhythm (sleep is very important for this)

    • The “eye” is typically seen as fire

  • The ascension and consciousness body is our astral body

  • The regenerative and vital body is our etheric body

  • A great deal of emphasis that the heart is not a “pump” but rather a sense organ that moves the blood throughout the body, while sensing signals within it (heart is considered a sense organ) this also ties into the importance of maintaining biological rhythm.

  • And the physical body is very connected to the mineral body

  • We ask how are these elements involved in both causation and treatment/remedies of the specific illness in order to better understand what treatment is needed and where the root cause of the imbalance in homeostasis lies.

 

There are many ways to observe the signs of a body that is not achieving homeostasis:

  • Able to tell if there’s a cramping illness from hyperactivity in the astral body due to inflammation or overactivity 

  • Able to observe edema, puffy skin or eyes? Difficulties with the kidneys shows us there’s an issue within the water system of the body

  • Lab tests show inflammatory markers that point to overactive astral or sensory function.

  • What do metabolic functions look like within the body?

  • What sort of other challenges have affected the patients health?

  • Emotional trauma? (Effects astral body function, and shocks the etheric body) lowering regenerative efficacy)

  • Other bodily stress or environmental factors, or traumas to there nervous system? (craniosacral  therapy is great for nervous system trauma)

  • Do they have healthy “rhythm” habits? Eating habits, outdoor time habits, sleeping habits all play a large roll.

  • Is the microbiome healthy? Forming a healthy biome in relationship to the earth is crucial, are the foods they are eating rich in vitamins and minerals from local biodynamic sources? 

 

Using metals in Anthroposophic Medicine

  • Observing polarity of the metals 

  • Used to offset imbalances within the body 

  • Use iron and copper are common

  • Iron encourages incarnating and becoming very present within oneself (encourages regulatory capacity)

  • iron encourages healthy metabolic function

  • Copper is used for spasming or cramping 

  • Copper is used for kidney function 

 

What about the teaching methods at the Waldorf School, also created by Rudolf Steiner?

  • A curative and very healing education

  • How we educate has a direct relation to how we treat our health (for example a holistic approach to education directly correlates to a holistic approach to health)

  • A Waldorf approach encourages high levels of creativity at a young age, this ensures that the developing part of the brain that deals with memory is not taxed too early on

 

Looking for an Anthroposophic Doctor?

  • Head over to the Physicians Association for Anthroposophic Medicine, and visit the Doctor Resources page (listing over 300 trained doctors!)

  • There are also 1 week training courses for physicians each spring available for sign up through the website.

  • Zoom events on the website as well! These include lots of important and resourceful topics as well as up and coming information, and other updates regarding Anthroposophic Medicine!

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Links & Resources Mentioned​:

Anthroposophic Medicine

Mentioned in episode: Anthroposopic training week. Click image for link.

Ita Wegman, MD co-founded Anthroposophical Medicine with Rudolf Steiner

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