‡ Folgendes hat anthroposofische Einschlüße ‡
N.America, north of Pennsylvania. It was first imported to Europe in the 16th century and into Britain in 1566. It was named after the well known and closely
related Thuja orientalis, imported in earlier times from China.
The form is graceful, regular and conical, rarely exceeding 30 feet in height. It does not possess needles as do other conifers but develops flat feathered leaves
with green scales. The end twigs have renounced their woody character and have taken on a leafy form. These flat leaf-like forms are orientated horizontally in
comparison to Thuja orientalis whose leaves are aligned vertically, m most other conifers, the warmth qualities are seen in the etheric oils and gums. In the Thuja
these qualities are intensified by the presence of camphor-like etheric oils (yellow green and volatile). Apart from these oils, the plant contains bitter substances
such as tannic acid and wax resin, Thujin (an inflammable lemon yellow substance) as well as sugars and considerable gelatinous material.
These features demonstrate an abundant vitality in comparison to the more sclerotic materializing tendency of most other conifers.
The name Thuja indicates its use for incense in temple sacrifices. (Thuo in Greek means sacrifice). This would have referred probably to a related Cedar species.
Legend has it that the wood of the Tree of Life was used for the Cross of Golgotha. Various writers refer also to Cypresses or Cedars - all relatives of Thuja.
Such legends indicate these trees as having spiritual significance. Thus it is interesting to note its use in incense and its traditional use in graveyards.
There the Tree of Life accompanies those who have gone through the gate of death.
Traditional Uses: An ointment prepared from the leaves was used in earlier times by the North American Indians. Later it was used in European herbalism as an
astringent and diuretic. A decoction has been used in intermittent fevers/rheuma/heart failure/coughs/scurvy and as an emmen-agogue. An injection of the tincture has
been said to cure intermittent warts. Toxic doses may produce abortion through severe gastrointestinal irritation and uterine contractions. Flatulence and gastric distension
are also caused as well as spasms and convulsions.
Its traditional use in homeopathy is for non-specific urethritis. This was first discovered by Samuel Hahnemann after a theological student presented with a thick, purulent
discharge, burning urine and swelling of the male parts. Hahnemann diagnosed venereal urethritis which was, of course, vigorously denied by the patient. Not wishing to
give offense, Hahnemann advised him to rest for 3 days, after which time he completely recovered. The student later remembered that shortly before the onset of symptoms
he had chewed several leaves from the aromatic Thuja tree. Symptoms helped by Thuja: fatigue/exhaustion/heavy limbs/unwillingness to move.
We can recognize these later symptoms anthroposophically as an inability of the astral body to connect with the lower organism. So Thuja was also indicated by R.S. for
conditions where the digestive system was too weak to break down and dissolve ingested food. In the 20th lecture of his first medical course, R.S. describes how foods are
broken down and dissolved, freed from their intrinsic properties and reduced to a mineral or "salt" state. When this process is weak, the insufficiently dissolved food stuffs
cannot be absorbed and therefore cannot pass over the boundary of the bowel wall into the activities building up lymph and blood. They try to adapt and "seek an outlet in
the opposite direction". One wonders whether this could be a cause for diarrhea and inflammatory bowel disease.
Here Thuja can be a remedy. Through its active life-force it activates the dissolving process in the stomach under the control of the astral body. This in turn aids physical
digestion as well as helping to overcome the foreign etheric forces in the food. This overcoming of foreign forces can also be seen in the use of Thuja for uncontrolled
proliferative growths such as warts, condyllomas, papillomas or polyps.
R.S. mentions in “Fundamentals of Therapy” how undigested foreign life forces in the food may pass over into the body, stimulating protein secretion in the urine. Here the
body can be seen as trying to rid the body of foreign activity. This taking in of foreign forces is also seen in the after effects of alcohol. Here the process is opposite to the
condition for which R.S. advised Thuja, and here Nux-v. was indicated. From this viewpoint Thuja and Nux-v. are polar remedies.
This sluggish digestion process regulated by Thuja and its opposite process, the too-active uptake of metabolic products, are both regulated by the use of the metal Silver as