Butterfly Melita Yvonne Dyason


Licence No.KZN00041D    Practice No. 0805033   Reg No: A01252

From illness to wellness

Anthroposophical Medicine

[Anthropos = Human Being — Sophia = Wisdom]

It is a form of complementary medicine developed by Rudolf Steiner [1861-1925] that considers the entire human being and takes into account that human beings, nature and the cosmos are interrelated. It’s approach to medicine adds spiritual insight to a diagnosis and then healing.

Conventionally trained medical doctors applies anthroposophy teachings which combine orthodox medical treatment with complementary practice. This modern holistic paradigm combines homoeopathic and herbal medicines, natural remedies and elements of allopathic principles.

Many other therapeutic disciplines [that have developed within the approach], include homecare, nursing, artistic therapy, music therapy, hydrotherapy, curative eurhythmy [movement] and massage.

Anthroposophic medical practitioners do not work with only that which is weighable and measurable. They see their patients as having four aspects:

  • A physical body, which is subject to the laws of chemistry and physics,
  • A formative life force, responsible to growth, repair and maintenance,
  • A feeling realm and
  • An individuality or Ego

The following offers an insight into the theory of what lies behind anthroposophical treatments.

The Anthroposophic Picture of Man

A four fold organism is essentially a practical, working picture which is widely used by those who work with people and choose to work according to Anthroposophy principles. These teachings are used in child education, adult education, business consultancy, industrial training and, of course, medicine. For anyone working with people, the use of this model can ensure that the “whole person” is taken into account in the process.

Anthroposophy works out of the basic premise that we have a shared evolution with and a direct relationship to the three kingdoms of nature, in addition man is a fourth, higher member of being.

Man Has a Physical Body

The laws of chemistry and physics are as valid as for any other lifeless object of the mineral kingdom

This physical body would actually disintegrate, if an organisation of opposing forces did not keep it together. Anthroposophy, calls this organisation of formative forces, the life-body or etheric body.

We find the physical body and the life-process [life-body] exclusively together in living nature in the plant kingdom.

However, animals, like man, have feelings, urges, desires, and experiences - all of which are lacking in plants. The organ that makes this consciousness possible is, like the life-process [life-body] - supersensible, that is we can only see its manifestation, not its innate being.

This living organisation we call the feeling-body — Anthroposophy talks of the soul-body or astral body.

The human being with his self consciousness goes beyond animal. He can think, he can imagine, can voluntarily remember, act freely, can be creatively active, etc.

Through the little word “I” man distinguishes himself from animals. The human being has an “ego” as the fourth, supersensible member of his being.


+ Life Processes
+ Life
+ Life
+ Consciousness
+ Consciousness
    + Self Consciousness
I – Ego

Three fold energy centers of man

The Functional Systems.

We can distinguish the human body as three functional systems, two of these can be seen as diametrically opposed energy centres [polar opposites] that are balanced by a third unifying force.

The main concentration of the nerve-sense system is at the head pole, though its functions extend right to the tips of the fingers and toes.

In the lower part of man (at the abdominal pole) we have the metabolic-limb system, and in the middle, in the heart-lung area, is the rhythmic system. As with the nerve-sense system, the metabolic-limb and the rhythmic systems extend throughout the body but have their centres in the circulation and breathing.

Functional Systems

Head Pole
Nerve-Sense System
[Conditions associated with Old Age]
Abdominal Pole
Metabolism & Limb System
[Conditions associated with Childhood]

Heart & Lung Pole
Rhythmic System
Circulation & Breathing [Mediator]

Characteristics of the three systems

Nerve-Sense System - Head Pole

Looked at, in very simple terms, the head region is cold, still, quiet and hard when compared with the rest of the body. Through this area we “take in” the outer world, the nerve-sense system is acted upon by the environment. Nerve tissue does not regenerate, real growth as an expression of life hardly exists in this area, it is the most “dead” part of the human. Should this region predominate we have hardening, sclerotic illnesses conditions of old age.

Metabolism and limb system – Abdominal Pole

Here we see the opposite of the above. This region shows warmth and movement. [Movement is, of course, characteristic of muscle, but we must also remember non-visible locomotion e.g. the transformation of substance [metabolism] Rather than passively “take in”, as is the case with the nerve-sense system, this system actively “transforms and eliminates”. Should the metabolism and limb system predominate we have inflammatory illnesses, conditions more associated with childhood.

Rhythmic system - Heart & Lung Pole

In the two polar opposite systems we see the morbid tendencies, towards hardening and sclerosis on one hand, and towards dissolution and inflammation on the other. The mediator, which brings balance and harmony to the potentially warlike situation, is the rhythmic system, the heart and the lungs. The heart links the whole through circulation and the lungs through breathing.

Health is a balance of the two polarities

The “tendency” for illness is there, but keep in balance. Health is not an absence of inflammation or sclerosis - but a delicate balance between the both. The medicines, attempt to restore this balance.