The Cayce Herbal 
 A Comprehensive Guide to the  
Botanical Medicine of Edgar Cayce

Botanical Name: Rhamnus Purshiana

Common Names and Synonyms: Sacred Bark, Cascara Sagrada

Background: This tree is native to the Pacific coast of North American and the reddish-brown bark of the cascara Sagrada is primarily regarded by herbalists as a laxative.  Stripped from the tree in the spring and summer, the bark is aged for a few years and made into a powder.  Aging the bark changes the harsher chemicals and makes the herb's action milder and less likely to cause cramping or nausea.  As a laxative, the bitter taste is often masked by the addition of licorice or ginger.  Cascara Sagrada re-stimulates peristalsis in cases of chronic constipation and tones the intestinal walls.

Cascara in the Cayce Readings
  • Edgar Cayce typically prescribed cascara as a laxative, usually in combination with other eliminants.
  • Cascara was recommended in several forms:
    • Dry or powdered cascara

      1/2 grain 36 readings
      1 grain 22 readings
      1/4 grain 10 readings
      2 grains 5 readings
      10 grains 2 readings
      1 1/2 grain 1 reading
    •  Fluid extract:
      1 ounce 1 reading
      1/2 ounce 1 reading
    • Compound

      1 ounce 1 reading
      1/4 ounce 1 reading
      1 grain 1 reading
    • Syrup of cascara:

      1/4 ounce 2 readings
      1/2 ounce  1 reading
  • Cascara was often used in conjunction with other substances.  The following substances were most often mentioned in the same readings with cascara:
      Licorice 42 readings
      Sanguinaria 35 readings
      Yellow Saffron 15 readings
      Rhubarb 12 readings
      Sarsaparilla 9 readings
      Tolu 8 readings
Cayce Quotes on Cascara

. the action with this, that is with the licorice of the cascara is to produce not an excitement of the mucous tissues of the stomach and intestines, but a condition that will act with these to eliminate through the proper channels the poisons now being absorbed by the blood back to the system .

    Every third day a laxative should be taken, thus:  To 2 grains of licorice add 2 grains of cascara and 1 grain of senna.  One capsule of this is a dose.

    Also cleanse the system, so that the liver and the hepatic circulation are in accord with the body.  This would be done by the use of hepatics, such as would be found for THIS body in Castoria, or Senna, Cascara and PRUNE juices - or its sedative from same, see?

    Then take an activity that will make for a MOVEMENT through the alimentary canal; as Castoria, we find; or Syrup of Figs, or Cascara Sagrada, or any that is chosen or proven for the body itself.

    Those properties would be better that are found in the solution (rather than the dried) called Simmons' Liver Regulator, which is a vegetable compound including the Ragweed, and Cascara - that makes for an activity upon the GALL duct, the pancreas and the spleen.  Use the liquid; not the dry.  Take in broken doses; that is, half a teaspoonful about every two hours, until there is a FULL evacuation - or two or three reactions through the bowels.

    Afterwards have an emit, as a vegetable laxative; preferably of a senna base, - Syrup of Figs or Cascara or the like.

(Q)  Should I take Olive Oil, say a teaspoonful with each meal?
(A)  This is very well, but what is needed is to cleanse the colon and the secretions of the liver and the gall duct increased.  Thus the form of vegetable forces indicated.  For this is ambrosia weed, with sufficient of the licorice and cascara to aid in stimulating and in fitting it for the body - though the better way would be to eat the ragweed itself!

    For the eliminations, for this body, and to stimulate the gastric flow, take that called Carter's Little Liver Pills.  These are not calomel but are Cascara and Ambrosia.  These combinations would be well to take occasionally.  They are not habit forming and they will be effective for the body.


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