was born in Limestone country. This has implications. It is a
different thing to be born to clay or schist or basalt.
To be born in limestone country is to learn a deeper lesson. You live on top of a reef. For millions upon millions of years a milky sea has washed over the ground on which you stand.
Tiny creatures have lived here in numbers beyond counting. There is no word for their abundance. Fish and snails, marine worms, shrimps and pipis and mussles, and outnumbering them all, minute creatures called bryozoa.
They still exist at the margins between sea and land. Hundreds of species and each possessing brain, mouth, gut and bum. Each living out its life in a shelly box - no more than a mm wide. The box may be square, hexagonal, oval. Whatever makes the neatest fit with its neighbours. For the creatures form a colony. Clustered at the tidal margin, contained within their boxes, they live an uncomplicated life.
And the most extraordinary thing about them, the thing I love most, is this - they have acquired the knack of resurrection. Within their tiny boxes they live for around 6 months but during that time they die three times, they putrify, brain and gut and mouth and bum melt down to brown slush. Seemingly dead they rot inside their box then amazingly after a few days they revive. Brain and gut, mouth and bum take their previous forms. The lid flips open, the feeding tentacles reemerge. The creature is reborn. They live and rot, live and rot, until finally they die for good. Brain and gut, mouth and bum melt. The little shell box crumbles. It dissolves. So in a perfect reversible reaction, dissolution and precipitation, in near exact equilibrium, by infinite tiny accretions, the colony expands. Isn’t that astounding?"
From Limestone by New Zealand author, Fiona Farrell, published 2009.
What are the themes we can take from
- tiny individuals that are part of a complex colony
- a substance evoluting over millions of years under water
- life precipitating in a tiny shelly box and dissolving again
- birth, death and resurrection
Compare these to the proving symptoms of Limestone by Nuala Eising and 9 others in 1994
“Went walking and walking over fields and walls. Feeling of fear that I'd be absorbed into the landscape and never escape. I turned back. I felt part of the stones. They were almost invisible because they were part of me - fluid, water, merging.”
“I am just lying still - my voice is still. It has the stillness and quietness of death. I feel I am lying in a glass coffin, no part of my body moving. It's like the stillness and quietness of death. Only I'm not cold. It's not unpleasant or fearful. It's like being dormant for the winter.”
“Tired, body thin, arms and hands very large, watery feelings, all fluids moving, relaxed, air of benevolence, lovely.”
When you look at the rubrics of Limestone (Lap-c-b) you see the same themes :
Absorption in nature
- Mind, ego, devoid of ego (1)
- Mind, Absorbed, buried in thought
- Mind, Cares, nature for, animals, plants (1)
- Mind, Monomania (for nature; for sea; for water)
- Mind, love, nature for (2)
- Mind, Anxiety sudden change (1)
- Confusion of mind, reality, can’t tell what is real and what is not (1)
- Mind, fancies, absorbed in
- Delusion - body, body parts, lighter than air
- Delusion - separated, mind and body are
- Delusion - body, body parts, diminished (2)
- Delusion - body, body parts, diffused has (1)
- Delusion - body, body parts, enlarged
- Delusion - body, thin (2)
- Head, enlarged sensation
- Delusion - unreal, everything is
- Delusion - vanish, she will (1)
- Delusion- water, under water (1)
- Dream, as if in a
home, desires to be
- Delusion, enslaved (1)
- Delusion, trapped (1)
- Mind, escape, attempts to
- Delusion, waiting, he, is
- Stomach, vomiting, morning, coughing on (1
- Throat, mucus, detach, difficult to
- Mind, forsaken
- Mind, estranged, from her family
- Mind, estranged, forgetful of relatives and friends
- Mind, estranged, from society
- Delusion, deserted
- Delusion, appreciated, not
- Delusion, dirty, is
- Delusion, wretched, she is (when looking in the mirror)
- Mind, fear, observed,
of her condition being
- Mind, fear, insanity, of losing his reason
- Mind, alone, of being
- Mind, fear, evil
- Mind, fear, happen, something will, terrible, horrible
- Horrible things and
sad stories, affect her profoundly
- Irritability, disturbance, from any (1)
- Irritability from trifles
- Mind, sensitive, noise to
- Mind, offended easily
- Mind, sensitive, external impressions, to all
- Dreams of America and Africa, and the slave trade
- Delusion injury, inflicit on, someone (1)
- Delusion, poisoning people, she is (2)
- Mind, shrieking, anger during
NB: Limestone dreams are not included in the Mac Repertorisation
What is the particular challenge for people who need Limestone?
It seems the challenge is to experience the feeling of belonging. Limestone people have this sense of oneness that comes from being with nature, with animals. Without ego, simply being.
Yet, in the human world they struggle with feelings of isolation and disconnection, where they may perceive themselves to be estranged from society, trapped, and enslaved. Our little calcium shells dissolving and precipitating, as we are trapped and released.
I received an email from a person who works closely with animals and who found that Limestone helped him move through times of being stuck in this state of disconnection. I was amused to read as the byline of his email this quote :
"People commonly presume unity to be a positive value.But they are typically thinking of unity as something to be "worked toward". "Working toward" is not what I am talking about. I am talking about prior unity. I am talking about people entering into a dialogue that is based on the working-presumption of prior unity, and non-separateness, and ... global indivisibility..."
The resurrection of Limestone comes from finding connection after being disconnected; coming alive after being dead, asleep, or unconscious for a long time; waking up into our inner connectedness with the human colony, realising we have never been separated; it is simply a delusion.
Could Limestone literally raise Lazarus from the dead? Who knows what possibilities are locked within those ancient bones.
There are many other manifestations of being trapped and thus released:
Teeth are trapped and
pain, sore bruised, molars
Putrid discharges are trapped and released; Ear, discharges, thick; Ear, discharges, offensive; Nose, discharge, orange
Menstrual blood is trapped and released; Abdomen burning, hot rocks like; Female, mense,painful, dysmenorrhea; Abdomen, pain, torn, loose,
Mucus is trapped and released; Cough, night, agg, waking from cough; Stomach, vomiting, gen, morning; coughing on
I have used Limestone acutely with babies to assist with teeth that are slow to come through (calc) , and a boy with undefined abdominal symptoms, who developed appendicitis within a few hours of having Limestone. His appendix was promptly removed and his general health improved. For a young woman abandoned by her family and adopted by another family, Limestone was used for boils which rapidly healed after two doses. Other members of her adopted family needed Marble, Anthracinum or Kali iodatum.
We are all aware of the rubric “Egotism, self-esteem” in the repertory.
Interestingly, there is Calc carb, and Lap-gr-m (granite) and Lap-mar- c (marble), to which we will come back later. Scholten identifies “ego” as a theme of the carbons, so its not surprising that these remedies are coming up in this rubric. In Limestone, however, the rubric is: “Devoid of Ego”.
So why is this rubric, devoid of ego, important?
If the rubric “Egotism” is about self esteem, does “Devoid of Ego” mean no self esteem? I do not think so. I think the correct interpretation is lack of attachment to ego.
Echkart Tolle in The New Earth says:
“There is a sense of self, of I (ego), in every thought, every memory, every interpretation, opinion, viewpoint, reaction and emotion.... the basis of your identity is precarious because thought and emotion are by their very nature ephemeral, fleeting... So every ego is continuously struggling for survival, trying to protect and enlarge itself. Ego is identification with form.”
“You realise your true identity is as consciousness itself... The ultimate truth of who you are is not I am this or I am that, but I Am.”
“When I (Ego) criticise or condemn another, it makes me feel bigger, superior.”
So maybe feeling devoid of Ego is about being present, being in the I AM state, in the state of calm abide, a state we find in meditation for instance.
Where do we come closest to freedom from attachment? Through drugs that take us into altered mind states and through those experiences in nature often described as ‘going into the void’. We saw earlier a similarity with some drug remedies and Limestone.
One of the provers said :"Time is so slow - but that's alright. It's like experiencing every moment and living in each moment totally. Feels like I'm over sensitive to everything. Absorbing everything that is going on for everyone. I have no protection, no boundaries. For the past few weeks I've noticed that I get totally engrossed in what ever I'm doing. Anything sudden happening completely freaks me out and I feel like screaming and screaming with terror. Like if I'm sitting in a room with people conversing - I'm totally there. If someone suddenly walks in - I want to scream and scream. I feel it inside but don't let it out... I feel I am going insane. I want to move very slowly and gently with nature and life. I don't want to disturb anything or be disturbed. I want everything to be gentle and easy and free.”
A interesting dream from a patient, M., evokes this sense of beingness.
“ My partner and I were running back to a house when we spotted a snake. Black and yellow head, coral snake I think. She got too close and it jumped on her, so I went back to help and it chased me instead. I ended up lying face down on the ground with this snake on my back looking to bite me. I Invoked Adi Da and breathed and relaxed and the snake eventually calmed down and slid off. It kind of knawed at my hand like a cat but didn’t poison me. It has the feeling of a Significant dream, though I haven’t analysed it, past being very pleased to remember to invoke the Divine in a dream. Thought you might be interested.”
He also told me about working with a horse that did not want to be ridden but simply wanted to hang out with him. He loved the feeling of being together with the horse, just being.
How do these Limestone themes come out in our patients ?
A woman, H., recently returning to NZ after many years overseas, describes it like this.
“Coming back to NZ I am leaving attachments behind, to return home, I chose to release a lot of my personal possessions, down- sizing, everything I get for me has an attachment for me, when I choose to give them up, a part of me is given up.”
“I have made a decision that I will find my place. Coming home is like slipping into your slippers that you left at the back door; you put them on and you are home. Just fill up the space again.”
Fear of estrangement:
“As a child I had a fear of being left behind, when people would go out and we stayed at home, I would scream and run after them, I didnt want to be left behind.”
And the insecurity of loss of identity, one of our main ego-attachments:
“I had a dream the other night that my purse was taken, all my credit cards and my identity. No identity, no evidence of who you are. The loss of identity is so traumatic, you immeditately become a person of suspicion. At Vancouver airport I left my purse at the counter but the lady of the shop had turned it in. I can see how you can become so easily separated from society and a person of no identity. If I am at home I can call up the relatives, but in a foreign land you have nothing, no one other than your work mates.”
When we are strongly attached to our ego, there is greater internal threat as seen through these patient dreams:
“I have dreams of flying and being chased and having the ability to land. By sheer will I had to hold myself up to stay up there, I had to actually demand that I stay flying. There were people trying to come after me or chase me. I had to will myself to be aloft. Other times it’s lovely to settle into that flying mode.”
M. tells how he had to do the opposite to stay aloft - to not think about it or use his will: "After Limestone, I did have a dream where I just flapped my wings and took off. Normally I have to flap hard and not try too hard or think about it or it stops working.”
When I first saw this patient, he described this dream to me: “I am a superhero, flying, got to run and jump and not try, if I try it turns to custard, some terminator character chasing me, I can't fly properly or trying to fly over trees and crash into them.”
The idea of using your will to escape danger, intrigued me. This has certainly been something I have experienced as a mountain climber in a storm, where you apply every ounce of concentration and effort to survive.
Eckehart Tolle talks about choosing to stay unconscious or waking up into the state of I Am. We apply our will to it.
It was interesting to hear M. describe “anger and frustration at not being heard by several intractable people who couldn’t be flexible enough to hear what I was offering. Under all that was the hurt of not being heard/wanted/apreciated.”
H. describes how she would drink wine to go into an “unconscious state of not being present.” Yet, she loved the quiet, peace, trees, and river of home - the place where she could be very present.
And M. says: “the challenges I have before me are maturing into being "manly"(whatever that is), and also actually arriving, being present and having faith that there is a place in the world for me and perhaps we could stretch that to accepting that I have something of value to offer.”
When he feels disconnection, he describes it like this: “My body stretches, my feet get very far away, and my hand and arms turn to thick heavy stone and my body is pencil thin. Not quite out of body, but very hard to get out of. I think I am panicking about being deserted - I feel physical pain up my centre line. I feel solid like I can't move, an out of body experience, black and white, rejected and deserted.”
These are the same feelings that the provers had; feeling enlarged, thin, heavy, cannot move as if dead, rejected and deserted.
In the novel “Limestone” Fiona Farrell talks about living on the limestone reef - all those tiny creatures who live in their little hard boxes - the perfect analogy of human life and particularly human life in 2009, connected around the world as we are by internet and cell phone.
Is not this fascinating that we call our telephones: cell phones - we also call a prison, a cell; the basic unit in the human body is a cell; a monk lives in a cell; a smaller compartment of a larger whole is a cell, like a honeycomb; a cell is the small unit of organisation in the natural world, and a cell is the local area covered by a transmitter in a phone network.
Limestone contains the bones and shells of marine creatures, calcium carbonate, similar to but more complex than our old favourite Calc carb. The sensitive soft creature in the inside of the hard oyster shell, now meshed with millions of others to form a complex whole. Like Calc carb, Limestone has visions of phantoms, animals, and immense fear. Limestone also has sensitivity to horrible things, violence, cruelty. In Limestone, this sensitivity leads to a feeling of estrangement from the colony, compensated through absorption in nature.
Pearl (Peter Tuminello’s ), Myt-e-p (Mussel Pearl) and Nautilus are other remedies made from calcium carbonate and should be studied alongside Limestone.
Of course Belladonna is known as the acute of Calc carb, because it contains Lime. In Belladonna, we see the themes of dissolution (Limestone) (e.g., Del, transparent; Del, floating in air; Del, enlarged) and delirium with frightful images (Calc carb/ Limestone) (e.g., Del, sees people, Del, fires; Del, phantoms; Del, animals).
There are many other Calcs to study alongside these remedies and lets not forget Hep sulph, which is Calc Sulph burned in the crucible, with its extreme sensitivity and reputation for suppuration.
When Limestone comes under pressure and heats, Marble forms. Just as when carbon comes under pressure and heats, Diamond is formed.
So what do we know about Marble?
It is recommended for use after exposure to radiation. When it was first proven, it was used for children from Chenobyl.
Nuala Eising wrote: “ Before I did the Marble proving, the man who comes into my dreams gave me a lecture about marble and the people who had been affected by radiation. He said that the heat and intensity and pressure changing limestone to marble is the exact same process when someone is exposed to radiation. Marble is metamorphic. What happens to someone exposed to radiation is that they get an incredible amount of heat. The calcium in the body changes and they become metamorphic versions of what they were initially. When you get the peripheral effect of radiation, Granite is the remedy. But he said if somebody has been left with the radiation, and the changes have taken place, then they need the Marble. He said, "Look at white marble: it crumbles easily, it's translucent." I would say bloodless as well. He said, "Look at the children of Chernobyl. They are white and translucent, they crumble from the inside. Radiation affects you from the inside out. Look at marble - it is only the shine on the surface that keeps it together. And it's the same as the kids."
Nuala goes on: “You get a lovely picture as well from the kids. On the psychological level, when somebody starts feeling that they have nothing on the inside, what they start to do is make themselves a showpiece and it's because of an intense need to be taken care of. So Marble feels that the only thing they can offer is to be beautiful, graceful, charming and everybody will love them and take care of them-that type of thing. That's what Marble is about and that is what happens after somebody is severely affected by radiation. “
I wonder if Michael Jackson needed Marble!
I have used marble a number of times, when I see intense whiteness or paleness of a child for instance, or when a person has been overexposed to cellphones, electrical currents in the home, cellphone towers or from radiation cancer treatment. It is worth studying the many ways in which body systems may be broken down by over-exposure to radiation. The work of the late Dr Neil Cherry records neurological problems, cancer in various forms, problems with melatonin/ sleep and even DNA changes. Recognising this remedy before the functional changes have occurred in a person may be life-saving, and it may be very helpful for cancer patients undergoing radiation therapy.
It is a great remedy for boils, which will dissolve very quickly after a dose or two, when the picture fits. I have also used it for bed-wetting, over-sensitive children, coughs, and so on.
In the Marble provings, you may, on one side, see hardness, avarice, cruelty, inhumanity, emasculation, pleasure-seeking, fury, desire for abundant riches, dreams you have to kill a mouse, stealing. Dreams of being a noble person, a cat. Adulterous. On the other side, there may be sensitivity to cruelty, to criticism, forsakeness, delusion he is a new born kitten.
The provings of Limestone and Marble contain many dreams, which you will not find represented in Mac Repertory. Most curious to me, are these dreams in the Marble proving:
Dreams of India - with its vast poverty and huge riches, the Taj Mahal made from shining white marble (Princess Diana’s moment of estrangement)
Dreams of Russia - cold war, vast whiteness, Chenobyl, split into sometimes warring factions.
And remember, in Limestone we had dreams of America and Africa
Dreams of America - the slave trade and the abolition of slavery, speaks with an American accent. (how many of our teenage children walk around speaking with American accents!)
Dreams ofAfrica - entrapped by slavery, poverty, AIDS
I wonder where China fits into the calcium carbonate story?
How does Calc carb connect with Limestone and Marble?
Through these three remedies of stage 2 of the ferrum series, we see an evolution of consciousness in the world.
In Carb carb our issue is about security; can we emerge from the safety of our family to seek and find freedom from judgement in the outer world? Sankaran says that the main feeling of Calcarea carbonica is: "I need security to be alive". One of the important rubrics of Calcarea carbonica is the single symptom: "Delirium, talks of nothing but murder, fire and rats". This delirium represents his fears of humans and of natural and animal dangers.
Carbon, says Sankaran, which forms the very basis of the living kingdom, represents the survival instinct, the basic reaction required to live. The situational Materia Medica of Carbon is one of fright, where there is a threat to survival and the person finds him/herself too small and poor in the race for survival.
In Limestone, we sense a lack of belonging, which leaves us feeling too small, too thin, estranged, and not appreciated yet, longing to feel part of the human colony and compensating through our immersion in nature.
In Marble, we experience estrangement in the outer world, when ‘heat and pressure’ become too much and the ego attaches itself to riches, deceitfulness, absurd fancies, and indifference to the welfare of others.
Calcium and carbon are the basis of a new form of farming, called biological farming, which restores humus to the soil and grows healthy plants to nourish animals and humans. Farmers have traditionally manipulated nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium in the soil but now recognise the importance of lime, crushed from limestone. It is applied with humates (a soft form of carbon) to activate the millions of microbes in the soil that dissolve the minerals so they can be taken up by the plants. In the soil beneath our feet, millions upon millions of organisms, bountifully alive and entombed in calcium, live to rejuvenate and create the earth. We rely on this extraordinary interconnectedness.
Limestone and Marble have become favourite remedies in my practice. I came to understand how to use these remedies through muscle testing and by studying the provings, the materia medica, and my cases. Sometimes, Limestone will be a layer that is needed acutely, often to help the body to throw out some obstruction (much like we have used Silica) and other times the patient will require it to help resolve deeper chronic ailments.
Angela Hair lives and works in Hawkes Bay, New
Zealand, at the base of Craggy Range, which are covered in large limestone rocks, with her husband, teenage children and
Keywords: birth, death, resurrection, egoless, estrangement, trapped, Limestone
Remedies: Calcium carbonicum, Limestone, Marble