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Hack Tuke, Daniel – Sickness - Qualms induced by powerful emotions

Identifier

026062

Type of Spiritual Experience

Background

A description of the experience

As described in Illustrations Of The Influence Of The Mind Upon The Body In Health And Disease, Designed To Elucidate The Action Of The Imagination - Daniel Hack Tuke, M.D., M.R.C.P.,

PART II. THE EMOTIONS.
CHAPTER VII. INFLUENCE OF THE EMOTIONS UPON SENSATION.

Striking proofs of the induction of bodily sensations by means of psychical agency, are to be daily found in the sensations produced from mental imagery of an emotional character. Anxiety causes innumerable organic sensations. A man pictures himself in a position of responsibility ; delivering an important speech, for instance, in the House of Commons. This is instantaneously succeeded by a "qualm in the stomach." I do not now mean actual queasiness or nausea, but the well-known indescribable sensation referred to the pit of the stomach — the "epigastric centre;" others experience, instead, an equally well-marked sensation in the legs or in the perinseum.

Probably no sensation is more universally recognized as connected with Emotion than this instantaneous epigastric feeling, which may pass into a complete qualm in the sense of sickly faintness, or even into a qualm in the sense of its Saxon original — death.

Milton speaks of " qualms of heartsick agony," and the reader may be reminded of its psychical correlative — the qualms of conscience.

Again, I may either say I am qualmish from a moral cause, or, with Pistol, " I am qualmish at the smell of leek."

The sensation in the pit of the stomach forms, no doubt, the main reason why the emotions, when not located in the heart, have been referred to the stomach by the vulgar, and to the solar plexus by some eminent physiologists.

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Tylor says, in his "Early History of Mankind," that at the Berlin Deaf and Dumb Institution they push the forefinger against the pit of the stomach to express " I ;" that at the Edinburgh Institution they indicate their desire or will by placing the hand on the stomach, " in accordance with the natural and widespread theory that desire and passion are located there."

The source of the experience

Hack Tuke, Daniel

Concepts, symbols and science items

Concepts

Conscience

Symbols

Activities and commonsteps

Commonsteps

References