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

Botanical Name: Ricinus communis

Common Names and Synonyms: Castor oil, Palma Christi

Background: Native to India, Asia and Africa, and cultivated in the U.S. for the oil, the castor plant is a shrub with stems which can grow anywhere from 3 to 30 feet high in some latitudes.  The leaves are large and palmate, having blue-green lobes and serrated margins.  The small red flowers produce extremely poisonous, greenish-red oval fruit, which contains the deadly alkaloid, ricin.
    Castor oil is extracted either through compression or decoction. Cold pressed oil is superior to that compressed with heat.  Fresh seeds are shelled and crushed between rollers.  The mass is transferred to hemp cloths and placed in layers on a screwpress. Once the oil is expressed, water is added and heated to the boiling point to separate the scum from the oil.  In heat compressed castor oil, the seeds are heated or baked for an hour before introducing them into a screwpress to draw off the oil, which again is mixed with water and boiled for an hour to clarify.  This process of decoction generally is used in India, where castor oil extensively is used for illumination, rather than medicinal purposes. Castor oil is a powerful laxative, has an unpleasant taste and consistency, and is best administered in capsules.

Castor Oil in the Cayce Readings
  • Applied topically, castor oil was recommended to remove warts. Mixed with baking soda, castor oil was used to soften and remove calluses from the feet.  Rarely, castor oil was to be taken internally as a purgative.

  • Warm castor oil packs applied to the abdomen was the most widely recommended use for castor oil. Castor oil packs were given for a variety of complaints, from breaking up abdominal adhesions, to loosening locked bowels.  Abdominal castor oil packs were typically followed by doses of olive oil.
Cayce Quotes on Castor Oil

. DO NOT create such a condition, by taking so much - either of the oil packs or of the olive oil - as for the body to become dependent upon, or the body become so strained by the constant purging of the upper portion of the alimentary canal, or of the hepatic circulation, but keep DOWN the inflammation.  NOTHING is much better than the olive oil as a food for the intestinal system.  This may be left off occasionally, however, for a week or ten days, and then resumed again.
    Across the areas of the lacteal ducts, the spleen, the pancreas, the liver, the caecum, we would apply Castor Oil Packs to alleviate those tendencies for tissue in the area to adhere and thus create at times the spasmodic reaction to the nervous system itself.  These should be applied hot but not so hot as to injure, to be sure, the bodily functions.  They should be changed about every hour for periods of two to three days, rest a week and then begin again.

    Have sufficient periods of the Castor Oil Packs.  To be sure, they are disagreeable, but they will break up lesions, as no other administrations will.  The best time to take these is the evening, to be sure.  These should be given in series; applied for an hour each evening for two or three evenings BEFORE each osteopathic adjustment is to be made, see?  At least every OTHER series, follow same with at least a tablespoonful of Olive Oil taken internally.

    First we find that there should be several series of Castor Oil Packs, three to four thicknesses of old flannel saturated with hot Castor Oil, applied just as hot as the body can stand for one hour each day for three days in succession.
    Apply these directly to the body, cover so as to prevent soiling linen, then apply the electric pad.  These would extend over the gall duct and liver area to the caecum, along the right side, or the whole right half of the abdominal area, from the rib to the groins.
    After the third day of applying these Packs, take internally a tablespoonful of Olive Oil.

    Once a week, and for at least three hours at the time, we would apply the Castor Oil packs over the caecum and the lacteal duct and gall duct area.  Use at least a three-ply of flannel wrung out of hot Castor Oil.  This would necessitate the changing of the cloths at least three times during that period, or an hour for each application.
    The day following the packs, for the better eliminations through the alimentary canal, we would take internally the combination of properties found in Fletcher's Castoria. Taken in very small quantities will be much more effective; quarter to a half teaspoonful every half hour, during the whole day.  Do this each week on the day following the Castor Oil packs.  This will create for the body the proper associations of the lymph circulation, that will be increased by the applications for those things without and from within; producing better peristaltic movement for the system, and bringing about bettered conditions for the body.

    The LESIONS exist in those areas of the lacteal ducts, or that area just below the jejunum, and upon which there is the flow of activity from pancreas, spleen and liver to assimilate with that digested - or at the main center.  Not that there are not lacteal ducts through other portions of the system, but the lesions are where the greater network exists through which fats and the alkalines and acids are separated in the system.
    Here we would apply, consistently (over this area, you see), the hot Castor Oil Packs.  These should extend over this particular spot, which is four fingers from the umbilical or navel center toward the right side - only slightly, very slightly upward from that center.  If the hand is laid upon this area it will be found to be cold, in comparison to other areas.  Then apply these also, or let them extend also, over the liver area, extending to the caecum area, on the right side.  Use at least three thicknesses of flannel saturated with the Oil; not just sprinkled on or poured on, of the bedclothing, then applying an electric pad.  Keep the electric pad at a heat that is not too objectionable, but warm enough to produce the absorption of the oil into the skin, you see.  Let these remain on for an hour each evening, for eight days in succession.  Then leave off eight days, then apply again, and so on in this manner. but  saturate the flannel with the Castor Oil and apply hot.  Not so hot as to make it disturbing to the body, but warm; and then cover same with an oil cloth or the like, you see, to prevent soiling
    The organ, the liver itself, with its contributory reactions, as the spleen and the kidneys, show the greater disorders.  While this may not be termed as yet wholly cirrhosis of the liver, the spots and the hardening in portions indicate that it is bordering on that condition.  Also the condition in the gall ducts, and the excretions that come from the pancreas and duodenum, make the improper assimilation of elements in system.  Also there are those tendencies for the membranes of the colon and area to become dry, or a tendency for the lack of peristaltic movement, or for the lymph circulation to be proper through same, causing a pressure at times on the bladder and inflammation, naturally, to the kidneys.  All of these are secondary, but will become complications unless there is the removal of the pressures in the system so as to allow a more normal, nominal reaction of the assimilating system; for without the proper assimilations the vitality and the strength are gradually being used up, or burned up, in the attempt of the system to draw on the strength of same to supply the proper nutriment to the whole system.  This is not a jaundice condition; rather more the torpidity of the liver, from hardening condition; though the indications in the system indicate that this in itself might become one of the complications, in the reaction to the organs affected by the disturbance. In meeting the needs of the conditions in the present, as we would find, this would be the manner in which this might be done:
    First, begin with the Castor oil packs over the whole liver area.  These we would apply at least twice each day until there is a full reaction from the effects of the oil upon the lymph about the circulation in the liver proper.
    Apply, then, the Castor Oil Packs over the area about the lacteal ducts of the right side.  This would include the whole liver area even to the caecum on the right side, extending to the navel center.
    Do this at least an hour each day for five days.  Use three to four thicknesses of flannel thoroughly soaked in warm Castor Oil.  Using electric pad, low heat, to keep the Pack warm for one hour.
    After removing the Pack, sponge off the area with a rather strong soda water.  Then massage the same area gently, by a masseuse or an osteopath, or one well-trained in physiotherapy or neuropathic massage.

    Over the area of the liver, pancreas and the spleen, we would each evening apply castor oil packs; three or four layers off flannel dipped in castor oil and this kept as warm as the body may stand, for periods of thirty to sixty minutes.  When this has been done for two or three days, begin with small doses of the liquid Simmon's Liver Regulator until the system is entirely cleansed.  See?

    In the present, to relieve the tensions and to prevent the upsets which do arise at times now from the inflammation and cake caused in the mucous membranes of the pyloric portion of the stomach, and the concurrent disturbances which this produces with the pancreas and the liver in its activity in assimilation ...
    We would apply hot Castor Oil Packs for at least two hours each day for three days.
    On the evening of the third day of applying the Packs, take internally half a teacup of Olive Oil.

    The activities of the liver, especially the right lobe, cause a disturbance to the pancreas and the spleen. Thus, if we would relieve the tensions here, the greater portion of the disturbances through the body would be alleviated.
    We would begin first, then, by making this application to the body:
    Apply hot Castor Oil Packs for an hour each day for at least five days in succession, over the liver and extending to the caecum area.  Keep this heated as much as the body can stand,  but not sufficient to be disagreeable, just so there may be the absorption of the oils.  When the Pack is removed each time, bathe off with a weak soda water.
    On the third day of using these Packs, begin taking internally small quantities of Olive Oil; about half a teaspoonful two to three to four times a day.

    The breaking up of the lesions in the caecum and in the lacteal ducts is beneficial, removing much of that which destroys the coordination between the sympathetic and cerebrospinal reactions at times; PROVIDED that the adherence is prevented from being made again.
    As we find, with those adjustments that make for the better flow of the lymph and the circulatory forces through this portion of the body, we would add the Castor Oil packs as we have indicated before - which would assist in alleviating and drawing, through the absorption of the oil into the system, those activities of this vegetative or lymphatic circulation. These would be the more helpful.
(Q)  What can be done for the sore on the ear?
(A)  Massage it with sweet oil or camphorated oil in the mornings, and with Castor Oil in the evenings; not to hurt, but just around the edges and over it.
    For the conditions in the lower limbs and the feet, - we would massage these thoroughly with Peanut Oil.
    For the conditions of hardening, as on toe, we would use a mixture of baking soda and Castor Oil.  Do not bind up, but massage this on after the feet AND the lower limbs - from the knees downward - have been massaged thoroughly with the Peanut Oil.  Do this at least three to four times a week; and the condition - it will be found - will disappear.
(Q)  What is the best way to remove warts?
(A)  This one on the right knee is gradually leaving.  Put equal portions of Castor Oil and Soda on the finger tip, massage this, it'll make it sore but it'll take it away also.

(Q)  What will eliminate the warts from the hand and body?
(A)  Massage them with Castor Oil.

(Q)  How can [1179] get rid of her warts?
(A)  Apply a paste of baking soda with Castor Oil.  Mix together and apply of evenings.  Just the proportions so it makes almost a GUM; not as dough but more as gum, see?  A pinch between the fingers with three to four drops in the palm of the hand, and this worked together and then placed on - bound on.  It may make for irritation after the second or third application, but leave it off for one evening and then apply the next - and it will be disappearing!


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