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Hack Tuke, Daniel – Sickness - Paralysis caused by anxiety, stress, trauma and ‘intellectual labour’

Identifier

026042

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 I. THE INTELLECT.
CHAPTER III. INFLUENCE OF THE INTELLECT UPON THE VOLUNTARY MUSCLES.
SECTION III.— Loss of Muscular Power : Paralysis.

Actual paralysis from hard and prolonged intellectual labour should here be noted as a not infrequent result. In many of the cases which come under our notice, there are other causes at work, such as anxiety, disappointed ambition as to literary fame, impecuniosity, &c, and no doubt it would be difficult to find a case of purely intellectual paralysis.

At the same time excessive exercise of the reasoning powers must be accompanied by danger. It would be interesting to have some estimate of the number of literary men who succumb to paralytic affections, although, for the reason stated above, open to considerable fallacy. It may be remarked that these cases of paralysis do not, as a general rule, come on suddenly, but, as Dr. Richardson truly observes, are preceded by significant warnings, the most striking being " a sensation on the part of the patient of necessity during any mental effort for frequent rest and sleep” ; symptoms such as are described so faithfully by Johnson as belonging to the case of the poet Cowley.

The cause of these cases is usually clear ; it is a progressive course towards general palsy of mind and body, and it is not unlike the decline of mental activity in the age of second childishness and mere oblivion.

When this condition exists, at however early a stage, the slightest shock tells on the nervous structures, and transforms suddenly the threatening malady into the extreme reality.

Sudden muscular paralysis is the most common sequence of shock under this condition ; it is in most cases at first a local paralysis, but it may at once be general in respect to all the muscular system under the control of the centres of volition "
(" On Physical Disease from Mental Strain," xxi, 1869, p. 360).

The source of the experience

Hack Tuke, Daniel

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Types of hurt and organs

Activities and commonsteps

Commonsteps

References