Cayce Comprehensive Symptom Inventory (CCSI)
 Workbook and Manual
Version 1.0



    The purpose of this lesson is to help you to better understand the style and content of the "physical" readings given by Edgar Cayce.  With this increased understanding you will better appreciate the wisdom of the Cayce health information.


    By studying and applying the information in this lesson, you should be able to:

  • gain a basic understanding of the historical evolution of the Cayce physical readings,
  • understand the format and style of a typical physical reading,
  • begin to become familiar with terminology and physiological concepts used in the physical readings.


    Edgar Cayce gave over 9,600 physical readings for persons suffering from the full spectrum of disease.  Although this vast body of information has tremendous potential as a resource for research, clinical application, and home health, many people are unaware of this resource.  Even individuals who strongly believe in the value of the Cayce physical readings often avoid studying this material because the style and content of the readings can be difficult.

    Here is some basic information about the Cayce physical readings which you should keep in mind as you study the lessons on this topic:

  • EVOLUTION OF STYLE - The style and content of the Cayce readings changed over time.  In other words they evolved, and in many respects, became more sophisticated over the years.  Recognizing this developmental process will make it easier for you to understand the physical readings.  In general, you can think of the evolution of the physical readings in terms of three stages:
    • In the EARLY PERIOD (before 1922) physical readings were very loosely organized.  Edgar Cayce relied heavily on questions from the person directing the session to guide the process.  The treatment recommendations in these early readings were sometimes extremely vague.  The readings often ended abruptly.  During this phase, Edgar Cayce had not assumed the career of psychic diagnostician.
    • During the MIDDLE PERIOD (from 1922 until Edgar Cayce became nationally famous in 1943) the physical readings have a standard form and style with clearly organized sections.  Edgar Cayce adopted the career of medical intuitive in October of 1922.  In 1921 he gave 61 physical readings as compared to 239 in 1922, most of which were given in the last three months of that year.  The readings of the middle period are often long with abundant detail.  The general form of these readings tend to follow this format:
      • Introduction
      • Blood Supply
      • Nervous Systems
      • Organs
      • Treatment Plan
      • Question and Answer
    • Readings from the LATE PERIOD (1943 - 1944) are much more condensed in format because Edgar Cayce often gave several readings during each trance session.  In 1942 he gave 390 physical readings as compared to 761 physical readings in 1943.  In 1943 he had become nationally famous with the publication of his biography and an article in Coronet magazine.  He was deluged with requests from suffering individuals.  Therefore, the format of the later readings is very condensed and focused on briefly identifying the cause and treatment for each person in as few words as possible.  The advantage of these late readings is that they are often easy to understand because of their brevity and focus.  However, the readings contain less physiological detail than in the earlier periods.
  • VARIETY OF TYPES OF READINGS - Keep in mind that Edgar Cayce gave several types of readings such as "life" readings and "mental/spiritual" readings.  Even within the physical readings, persons were given initial readings (which tended to be relatively long and structured) and follow-up readings (which were usually brief and very focused on changes in the treatment plan).  So there is tremendous variability in the types of readings that Edgar Cayce gave.
  • LANGUAGE OF THE READINGS - Regardless of the period in which the readings were given, Edgar Cayce used the accepted medical terms and concepts of that era very accurately.  If the readings sometimes appear to have been given in a foreign language, there is a reason.  The readings utilized anatomical, physiological, and therapeutic language from late 19th and early 20th century medicine (especially with regard to osteopathic language).  Since medical language has changed, many of the terms used in the readings are now considered "out of date."  An old medical dictionary or atlas (such as Gray's Anatomy circa 1900 - which is still available at many bookstores) can be very useful for understanding the language of the readings.
  • ORGANIZATION - Also, the way the readings were recorded makes a big difference.  Gladys Davis Turner, Edgar Cayce's personal secretary who recorded the readings during the middle and later periods of Cayce's  career, seemed to do a particularly good job at organizing the readings into clear sections.  This makes for more visual clarity when looking at a reading.  Perhaps these changes in organization were also part of the more general evolution in the style of the physical readings.


1.  Gladys Davis Turner gave a talk titled "The Body Is The Temple" in April, 1957.  The talk was subsequently published in The Searchlight and is available for your study as part of this lesson (Appendix B).  Read the article.  Here are some questions to stimulate thinking:

  • Were you able to understand Mrs. Turner's explanation of how a typical physical reading is organized?
  • Which part of her explanation did you find most interesting?
  • Did her article motivate you to learn more about the Cayce physical readings?
2.  Study a reading from each of the periods listed in the Overview section above.  To make this as easy as possible, here are some exemplary readings from each period (Appendix D).     Commentaries are provided for each reading to assist you.  If you don't understand all the details, don't be anxious.  Just try to get a sense of the differences in these periods.  As you proceed to other lessons in this course, you will be provided ample opportunity to learn the complex aspects of Cayce's physical readings. Here are some questions to stimulate thinking:
  • After reading the three assigned readings, compare and contrast the style and content of them.
  • Which of the three styles do you prefer and why?
  • Do you think the Cayce physical readings have anything to contribute to current health care?
3.  Appendix C contains an article which was sent out to each person requesting a physical reading from Edgar Cayce.  As you study this article, imagine that you are about to receive such a reading.  Although Edgar Cayce is no longer available, the CCSI and workbook assignments do, to some extent, parallel the Cayce format of a physical reading.  What are your reactions to the article?  How might it prepare you to better utilize the CCSI workbook lessons?


1.  Although the three readings in assignment 2 above were given for unique individuals, most readings contain some general advice which we all can apply.  Try to find one thing from these readings or from the talk given by Gladys Davis Turner which you can apply in your life to improve your health or the health of someone you know.

Click here for Lesson 2.

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