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

Botanical Name: Arisaema triphyllum

Common Names and Synonyms: Jack-in-the-Pulpit

Background: Indian turnip was used by American Indians for stomach and bowel complaints. The plant is white, and its root resembles a small turnip. The Indians ate the berries and leaves surrounding the flowers, but considered the root poisonous. The fresh rhizome is very toxic, and can burn the mouth in the raw state, but once dried,  loses its astringent quality.  The Iroquois used the Indian Turnip as a food and as a medicine.  The Osage and Shawnee Indians used the Indian Turnip for fevers and coughs.   For malaria, they combined it with snakeroot and wild cherry bark for a tonic to be taken after the fever broke.  The Ojibwa and Menomonee Indians used the root for eye sores, and the Medkwakis used the chopped root on snakebites.

Indian Turnip in the Cayce Readings
  • Edgar Cayce regarded Indian turnip as a cathartic and astringent to the gastro-intestinal tract.
  • Indian turnip was typically prescribed as an ingredient in formula.  The early readings tended to recommend it in a dry form as follows:
      1/2 ounce 6 readings
      1/4 ounce 5 readings
      1/2 dram 5 readings
      1 dram 3 readings
      2 drams 2 readings
      10 grains 1 reading
      20 grains 1 reading
      1 ounce 1 reading
    • More often (as is typical in the later readings), Indian turnip was recommended in a processed form (usually essence although tinctures, extracts, and fusions were also mentioned).  The amount are as follows:

      20 minims 12 readings
      10 minims 7 readings
      1/4 ounce 6 readings
      3 minims 3 readings
      1/2 dram 2 readings
      40 minims 2 readings
      2 minims 1 reading
      5 minims 1 reading
      30 minims 1 reading
  • Indian turnip was always recommended with other substances in a compound, never by itself. Although a wide diversity of  formulas were given, the most common substances mentioned in the same readings with Indian turnip were as follows:
      Ginseng 55 readings
      Stillingia 39 readings
      Tolu 19 readings
      Wild Ginger 18 readings
      Wild Cherry 16 readings
      Calisaya 15 readings
      Sarsaparilla 11 readings
      Yellow Dock 11 readings
      Buchu Leaves 8 readings
      Pepsin 8 readings
Cayce Quotes on Indian Turnip

... those of the Indian Turnip as the cathartic that will REDUCE the gastric juices in the stomach when taken in the proper proportions with those of the other properties, to form for the system less of the activities of the capillary circulation or the fluids of the system are diminished in such a way and manner that the eliminations are carried along nominally; and when the PRESSURES are REMOVED.

    The activities of these properties with the system - in those of the herbs as are given:  The Life Everlasting is for that tendency of the creation in system of those elements in the system that create a high vibration in the blood supply, both as to the  respiratory and heart's action; while that in Ginseng for  the activity of the glands in the system as are affected by  the subjugation or depressions of the body, as in a general manner. The Indian Turnip acting as a stimuli to the functioning of the distresses in the assimilations in the duodenum; while that activity as is seen in the Elder Flower, that of the vibratory forces as changed in the whole of the mesenteric system, aided by those of the Stillingia and Sassafras as the CLARIFIER of the blood stream and the tendency of the allaying of nerve pressure.  The alcohol a stimuli and carrier, as is the Tolu for the digestive system.

    While there are no indications of ulcerations, lacerations, or such, there ARE the indications of the excess amount of that created that forms the lining or portions of the intestinal system as for peristaltic movement.  This isn't well, for it makes the body tire easily - and with cold, or with any exterior exercise above excess makes for headache, heaviness in feet, tendency for filling in throat and chest, and a general achey feeling over the body.  These, as we find, may be aided the best by
using those properties that were once given [in 348-8], as for those of alum root, Indian turnip, Wild Ginseng, compounded with simple syrup and alcohol - or just the alum root may be carried in pocket and eaten or chewed on just occasionally.  This will act as an astringent, but not as a deteriorator, of the muscular activities of the general system as related to digestion.


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