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An Energetic and Emotional Approach to Cancer

by Steven H. Horne, RH (AHG)


Over the past 20 or so years, I’ve read a lot of books on natural therapy for cancer. I’ve also talked with herbalists and natural practitioners who work with cancer patients, and I’ve met many people who cured themselves of cancer the natural way. I’ve even consulted with a few clients with cancer.  There’s no way around it.  Cancer is a difficult illness to treat.


There are people who go the medical route and live, and there are people who take that route and die.  There are also people who take the natural route and live, and others, following similar protocols, who die.  Many opt for a hybrid approach, using some natural remedies and some orthodox treatment.


I honestly don’t know what the best approach to cancer is - I think it varies from person to person.  If someone is going to go the natural route, I think they need to be extremely diligent and look at the problem very holistically, relying on diet, exercise, emotional healing, stress reduction and other tools besides supplements.


If they aren’t willing to take responsibility for themselves and make some serious changes, then they may be better off putting themselves into the hands of the medical profession, although I personally think they should at least look at a hybrid approach, since the medical approach only focuses on killing the cancer cells and doesn’t do anything to address the reasons why you got cancer in the first place.  But, it’s not my intention to discuss cancer therapy in this article.


What I want to do is tell you about my thoughts on the energetic and emotional issues that make cancer a problem in our society.  For starters, I’m convinced that cancer is primarily a disease of ‘civilization’ and in more ways than one.  First, it appears to be a very rare and unusual disorder among ‘primitive’ people, and historically, it has not always been a leading cause of death.


Secondly, I’m also convinced that the primary physical cause of cancer is environmental pollution (aggravated by nutritional deficiencies and emotional factors).  Both chemical and electromagnetic pollution appear to trigger cancer, with electromagnetic pollution being the more subtle and less recognized trigger; indeed I’ve seen several cases of cancer that I knew involved electromagnetic pollution.


But, third, and finally, I think cancer isn’t just a disease of ‘civilization’ in the physical sense, it’s also a disease of ‘civilization’ in the energetic sense.  In fact, I believe that there are underlying emotional issues which cause both environmental pollution and cancer.  So, we won’t solve either problem until we deal with these emotional issues.  That’s what I mean when I say ‘energetic.’  It’s a pattern of emotional energy at the root of both problems.  You’ll notice that I put the words ‘civilization’ and ‘primitive’ in quotes.  I’m doing this because while we are very technically-advanced, that doesn’t make us civilized.


The ‘Energetic’ of Cancer

I would like to put forth the hypothesis that our civilization IS a cancer.  To understand why I say this, let’s look very closely at what is happening in the body when a person has cancer and how it compares to what is happening in our society.  


Many years ago I had the opportunity of interviewing Dr. Bruce Halstead, a world-famous medical doctor and medical research scientist, and one of the most interesting and brilliant people I have ever met.  Dr. Halstead told me that the way we treat cancer does not make molecular sense.  He said that the body is forming cancer cells all the time, but the immune system recognizes these cells have gone deviant and destroys them.  Dr. Halstead felt that cancer was a disease involving weakened immunity - the body had lost the ability to recognize and destroy these deviant cells.


He then went on to say that surgery, radiation and chemotherapy all weakened the immune system, which made the underlying problem worse.  It’s good food for thought, but there’s more to cancer than just a weakened immune system. One also needs to understand why cancer cells form and what makes cancer cells different from normal cells.


Normal human cells are aerobic.  This means that they utilize oxygen to oxidize (‘burn’) nutrients for energy.  Cancer cells are anaerobic, which means they no longer have an oxygen-based metabolism.  They create energy in another way.  Dr. Otto Warburg was given a Nobel prize for discovering this fact decades ago.


All human cells start off with an anaerobic metabolism.  When an egg is fertilized and starts to divide and create new cells, these cells are all undifferentiated, meaning that these cells are capable of becoming any tissue in the body.  These undifferentiated cells are known as trophoblast cells and they are anaerobic, energy hungry and fast growing.  Cancer cells are very much like these embryonic cells. 


In his book, Cancer Simplified, Thomas H. Mansell suggested that there are trophoblast cells in our bodies left over from this embryonic state.  When the internal environment of the body deteriorates to a certain point, it creates an environment which triggers the growth of these cells.  That is also an interesting hypothesis and it makes a lot of sense to me.  


However, a more commonly accepted hypothesis is that since all cells came from these original trophoblast cells, it is possible for any cell to revert to this more primitive metabolism.  What triggers normal cells to revert is a topic of debate—it could be free radical damage to the DNA, deterioration of the internal environment or nutritional deficiencies - or a combination of these factors.  But laying aside what causes these cells to mutate, let’s look at what these mutating cells are doing.  


Normal body cells are in constant communication with other cells.  Through this communication, normal cells are harmoniously co-operating for the good of the body as a whole.  Cancer cells are separated from the rest of the body in that they are no longer responding to normal cell-to-cell communications.  Therefore, they are acting in a self-serving manner with no regard for the good of the body as a whole.


As part of this disconnected dysfunction, cancer cells are greedy.  They are consuming energy at a rate that is 12 to 17 times higher than normal cells.  This energy consumption is also triggering rampant growth.  The combination of this high metabolism and rampant growth also means cancer cells produce an abundance of toxic waste, which damages the body and weakens it further.  This results in increased anaerobic terrain for cancer cells, at the same time, creating decreased aerobic terrain for normal cells and a shortage of energy and oxygen.


Thus, like a parasite, cancer cells slowly kill the life that hosts them.  Literally, they are killing themselves at the same time they are killing the host.


The ‘Cancer’ of Western Society

Now, let’s compare cancer to Western society.  First of all, whilst native peoples generally saw themselves as part of a whole, connected to the land and each other, most people in modern society are highly disconnected.  People in the modern world are frequently so self-absorbed that they do not see how their actions are affecting the environment in which they live.  It’s a pretty obvious problem when you look at the way most people live in modern civilization.


How can a person in a major metropolitan area connect with the idea that all his food, air and water must come from the natural environment, when everything in the world in which he lives is completely artificial and man-made?  These are not new thoughts for me.  I’ve had them since I was a teenager.  But, we are not just disconnected from the earth; we are also disconnected from each other.  There is little sense of community in modern society, unless some crisis temporarily pulls us together.


Another way in which Western civilization resembles cancer is its greed.  Our society is energy hungry, gobbling up a huge amount of the world’s resources in order to sustain our ‘lifestyle.’  We also leave a vast amount of waste in our wake.  Many ecologists and environmentalists are deeply concerned about how our industrial society is poisoning the air, water and soil and destroying nature, but if changing things would hurt the ‘economy’ or inconvenience our personal ‘lifestyle,’ most of us are reluctant to change. Even the modern herb industry exhibits this greed and lack of respect for the land.


While Native Americans carefully harvested a few medicinal plants from an area where they were abundant, leaving others behind to re-populate the species, modern wildcrafters will take every plant in an area, leaving nothing for the next generation.  This has resulted in vast populations of wild plants being completely destroyed to fuel our ‘industry.’  Wild echinacea is almost extinct, whilst goldenseal and many other herbs are endangered.  This is just one small aspect of this social greed that permeates our culture.


These are all reasons why I say that modern ‘civilization’ is a cancer on the face of mother earth.  Like cancer cells, most people in our society are disconnected from the messages of nature and society that would keep up acting harmoniously for the good of the whole.  


To further elaborate, the cancer cell develops in a toxic environment in the body, which is created by the toxicity of modern society.  Because this cell is not getting the oxygen and nutrients it needs to sustain normal function, it mutates to survive in its toxic environment.  These mutations cause it to revert to embryonic functions where the cells multiply wildly.  At the same time, more pollution is created and the cancer spreads.  Eventually, if unchecked, it will consume and destroy the host environment.


So, energetically, cancer is a disease of disconnection, which causes the cell, deprived of the benefits of the body as a whole, to develop an obsessive, greedy self-interest that causes it to consume more resources than it really needs, multiply out of control and eventually poison and destroy the environment that sustains it.  Of course, if the immune system is functioning properly, it will recognize these mutated cells and step in to stop them.  But if the immune system isn’t functioning properly this won’t happen.


The 'Emotional' Aspects of Cancer

This brings us to our need to understand the emotional aspects of cancer because our emotional state has a huge impact on our immune system.  Numerous studies have shown that positive thoughts and feelings enhance immune function, whilst negative thoughts and feelings suppress immune function.  The ironic thing about cancer is that while it is linked to the greedy, polluting, disconnected mindset of society, the cancer patient is usually the opposite.  


They are frequently the self-effacing martyr - the ‘nice’ person who seldom gets angry and tries to be of service to everyone.  This is not a healthy, self-empowered service, but rather a co-dependent, neglect of self overindulgence of others.  In this state, the emotional seeds of cancer are sown, because this person will eventually start to resent taking care of everyone else and feel their own needs are neglected.  These deep-seated and often unacknowledged resentments start ‘eating’ at them, ie. cancer.


This is why cancer patients will often put themselves in the hands of assertive practitioners who ‘take control’ and tell them what to do.  They can be easily intimidated into complying with regimes that don’t make sense because they often have a hard time deciding what is in their best interest.  So, the cancer becomes the culmination of their self-martyrdom.  I want to talk about real-life stories - so, let me share one of my experiences with you.


About 15 years ago, my best friend’s wife was diagnosed with gallbladder and liver cancer and given less than a 3% chance of living past a year with conventional medical treatment. Ironically, at the same time, I met two people who had both successfully cured themselves of liver/gallbladder cancer with natural remedies.  I offered to hook her up with them.  She refused.  


Her reasoning was that she had to go the medical route because otherwise her family would think she had ‘given up’ and cause her all kinds of stress.  The medical doctor she saw told her that herbs and diet wouldn’t help her at all and that he wouldn’t treat her if she took any herbs or supplements whilst she was on cancer therapy.  This was most unfortunate, because months later, when her digestive tract was raw and inflamed from chemotherapy, I couldn’t even get her to drink a little aloe vera juice, or take some slippery elm gruel to soothe her digestive tract.


The day I learned she had cancer; I could immediately see why the cancer had developed in her liver and gallbladder. I knew this woman very well.  She was very nice, but never forgot or forgave an injury or injustice.  She would talk about things her brothers did when she was young and her husband did when they were first married as if they had happened yesterday.  I had long recognized her as being filled with unacknowledged anger and resentment.


Several months after she started therapy, she was visiting me one day and told me of a dream she had.  In the dream, she was standing in front of a forest that had been devastated by a forest fire.  She told me that she could hear the sound of birds behind her and that she knew that behind her was a green forest, filled with life.  She said that she knew that all she needed to do was turn around and she could walk into the beautiful, green forest, but she was so horrified by the burned out forest that she could not take her eyes off of it.


She asked me if I knew what the dream meant.  I told her that I felt she concentrated too much on the cancer (on trying to ‘fight’ the cancer) instead of focusing on life.  I told her that none of us know how long we have to live, but as long as we are alive we need to focus on living.  I also told her that perhaps she looked too much at the ‘negative’ things in her life and that she needed to ‘turn around’ and look at all the ‘positive’ and good things in her life.  This is in fact a good message for us all to heed.



Steven H. Horne is a highly acclaimed international author, iridologist, teacher, herbalist and natural healer.  Steven is a professional member and past president of the American Herbalists Guild and president of Tree of Light Publishing.


The above information should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional.








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