The thymus gland lies just beneath the upper part of the breastbone in the middle of the chest. Until the 1950s little was understood about the thymus, but now we have a good deal of information.The thymus is the "school and factory" for lymphocytes - the white blood cells responsible for the body's immunological reactions. Immature lymphocytes come to the thymus from the bone marrow. Under the influence of thymus hormones, the cells mature, and then settle in the lymph nodes and the spleen, where they give rise to T cells (T for the thymus-derived). Thymus hormones travel through the bloodstream, exerting their influence over the T cells.T cells are vital to our health. They seek out, recognise and destroy foreign cells. Without T cells the body would have no resistance to disease. Indeed, that is why AIDS is almost invariably fatal - the AIDS virus attacks the T cells, making them unable to combat any infection.Activating the thymus makes the body less susceptible to disease in the first place, and also better able to combat illness.In addition, the thymus gland monitors and regulates energy flow throughout the body. Whenever an imbalance occurs, it rebalances the energy.Thus the thymus is the first organ of the body to be affected by stress, whether it is physical stress - infection, disease - or mental stress. It is the link between mind and body.The thymus is influenced by an individual's physical environment, social environment, food, posture, and emotional attitudes. Thus, thinking about something unpleasant will weaken the thymus, while thinking about someone you love will strengthen it. The negative emotional - weakening - states are hate, envy, suspicion, and fear. The positive emotional states are love, faith, trust, courage and gratitude. We call these latter states thymus qualities.
Sunday, June 07, 2009
The Role of the Thymus
Excerpt taken from Notes on the Spiritual Basis of Therapy by Dr John Diamond.