Doctrine of Signatures

In yesterday’s post I wrote that the walnut, looking as it does like the brain, supports the functioning of the brain. In researching this further I came across the term ‘Doctrine of Signatures’. This is its history:

stock-photo-nuts-and-dried-fruits-mix-116210527Paracelsus* (1491–1541) developed the concept, writing that ‘Nature marks each growth…according to its curative benefit’.

The writings of Jakob Bohme** (1575-1624) spread the ‘doctrine of signatures’, suggesting that God marked objects with a sign, or “signature”, for their purpose. Parts that resembled the human body, animals, or other objects were thought to have useful relevance to those parts, animals or objects. The “signature” could sometimes also be identified in the environments or specific sites in which plants grew. Böhme’s 1621 book The Signature of All Things gave its name to the doctrine.

Böhme did a great service to the cause of foods as medicine, but by changing Paracelsus’s word ‘nature’ to ‘god’ did some disservice too! You see, allopathic medicine has attempted to write off the Doctrine of Signatures as superstition, even though studies have repeatedly shown that its core principles are true. The kidney bean, for example, not only resembles a kidney in shape and color, but also helps to maintain kidney functioning when regularly consumed. Let’s take a look at some other examples:

Walnuts – for Brain

With its two hemispheres, cranium-like shell and knotted folds, the common walnut looks like the human brain on many levels – and the brain is exactly what it benefits. Walnuts are the only nut that contains large amounts of omega-3 fatty acids, which help to prevent cognitive decline since mammalian brains are composed of, and require, the exact same acids.

untitledGrapes – for Lungs

Bunched grapes closely resemble the branches of alveoli that comprise our lungs, and which allow oxygen to pass from the lungs into the bloodstream. Grapes are proven to reduce the risk of lung cancer, and the chemical proanthocyanidin – present in grape seeds – can minimize the risk of allergy-related asthma.

Tomatoes – for Heart

Like the human heart, tomatoes are red and usually contain four chambers when sliced. They are an unbeatable source of lycopene, a plant chemical that helps prevent coronary heart disease and which neutralizes the harmful effects of LDL cholesterol. Furthermore, tomatoes are rich in folate, which aids the production of oxygen-carrying red blood cells – the very cells that the heart pumps around the body.

Carrots – for Eyes

A sliced carrot strongly resembles the human eye, even down to the complex pattern of the iris. Is nature telling us something? Carrots are extremely rich in beta-carotene, a plant chemical that minimizes the chances of contracting cataracts and developing age-related macular degeneration (a common eye condition that affects approximately 25 percent of individuals above the age of 65).

Avocados – for Womb

The womb-shaped avocado takes approximately nine months to grow from blossom to ripened fruit and contains an unusually large seed (‘baby’) in its center. Eating avocados helps to stabilize female hormones, remove excess birth weight and prevent cervical cancer.

Figs – for Testicles

If avocados were designed for female health, then the testicle-shaped figs were surely designed for male health. These sweet fruits hang in pairs, are protected by a delicate skin and, when sliced, reveal thousands of stringy white seeds. Figs are known to increase sperm count and sperm mobility and can help men overcome sterility.

Celery – Celery sticks contain identical amounts of sodium (23 percent) to the bones they resemble. Like calcium – which celery also contains in high amounts – sodium is essential for healthy bones.

Ginger – A piece of ginger looks a lot like the stomach it is renowned for settling.

Sweet potatoes – Sweet potatoes closely resemble the human pancreas and help to stabilize the blood sugar levels of diabetics.

Impressive, no? What do you think?

*Paracelsus (/ˌpærəˈsɛlsəs/; born Philippus Aureolus Theophrastus Bombastus von Hohenheim, 11 November or 17 December 1493 – 24 September 1541) was a Swiss German Renaissance physician, botanist, alchemist, astrologer, and general occultist

**Jakob Bohme (1575 – 1624) was a German Christian mystic and theologian. He is considered an original thinker within the Lutheran tradition

 

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