If you have reliable and accurate symptoms of the effects of coronavirus, please tell us in the comments.
If you have reliable and accurate symptoms of the effects of coronavirus, please tell us in the comments.
As a homoeopath, be you a medically qualified professional or not, Coronavirus is at present out of your hands. The allopathic grip on the situation is what it is, and if a person is taken to hospital with the flu, then treatment will be as mandated by the prevailing thoughts at the time. There will be no allowance for any other treatment.
There is a scramble for finding a prophylactic remedy to prevent the virus from taking hold, yet the symptoms of the virus appear to vary from country to country… and the criteria for sx assessment vary from homoeopath to homoeopath… and some are very suspect indeed. Worse than that, there is a scarcity of symptoms that a homoeopath needs for differentiation between remedies.
Recently I have treated about 21 cases of influenza, and 2 cases of pneumonia, both in my locale and in America, and based on the sx of the affected persons, I gave Phos to members of the families, and no one else contracted the flu. (All the patients recovered swiftly) In examining the coronavirus, (for my locale) I see that Phos might be suitable for use as a prophylactic, however, that is only based on what SX I can find from my colleagues in hospitals and the internet.
So my advice is to just keep watching and reading and listening for ‘real’ Sx and not broad generic ones, and then at that point we can help protect our patients.
Facts: 80% of people contracting the virus have it mild. As with any other virus, death occurs in individuals having serious pre-existing disorders, like cancer, diabetes, respiratory problems, heart issues etc. Even in the 20% that have it bad, less than 2% succumb.
This is the last post in this short series.
“a basic truth that explains or controls how something happens or works”
“a fundamental truth or proposition that serves as the foundation for a system of belief or behaviour or for a chain of reasoning.”
We have principles in homoeopathy. Medical principles that should guide us through all aspects of treatment and patient management. We have example after example with thousands of cases that show success in the face of mainstream and herbal medicine failure.
One principle that homoeopaths seem to neglect continuously, is acceptance of the law and principle of similars, this being the bedrock of the therapy of homoeopathy.
I’m disappointed. It would appear that people claiming to be homoeopaths are not prepared to lean on the principles of homoeopathy and pursue them vigorously to cure patients utilising the law of similars. Why is this? Do they think that other therapies are stronger than the law of similars? Did they forget that Hahnemann showed how naturopathy did not and could not work in the curative principle when he translated Cullens work?
For those wanting a prophylactic for the disease in their area, they need to STOP looking outside of the law of similars and find the similar as per the law. It is ridiculous to leave medical principles behind and look for combination remedies, or herbal solutions as the answer. Do not take any suggestions from naturopathy or Thai traditional or TCM or acupuncture as these do not conform to the law of similars. If a person claiming to be a homoeopath keeps pushing ‘solutions’ outside of the therapy, Let me remind them that they have committed to the principle of similars, and if they do not hold to it, my strong suggestion is that they should re-educate themselves or cease being known as a practitioner of Hahnemann’s therapy. They will do more damage than good.
Given that the majority of members of our profession subscribe to a false practice, it is essential that those wanting to be known as effectual practitioners, know what they are doing conforms to the directives as set by Hahnemann.
Don’t let an emergency cloud your training or judgement. Homoeopathy never fails, just the practitioner.
Homoeopathy faces enough criticism for the practice. Let us not add to it by encompassing other ineffective therapies that contradict the principles into it.
The IHM, at its inception in 1986 was primarily set up as a research and teaching Faculty. The goals and intentions have not changed in 34 years.
Most of the IHM practitioners are also teachers of Homoeopathy. It is important that the students of the practitioners see the clear distinction between Hahnemann’s advised practice methods and false ones. You cannot teach the principles and be seen to ignore them.
As the practice of homoeopathy has become more diluted and erroneous, we have stayed with the medical principles established by Hahnemann and continue to hold to them as the correct way to practice the therapy. We encourage experimentation and development of the therapy, but we do NOT ever overstep the boundaries that Hahnemann set the limits of usage of the medicines.
The law of similars is not peculiar to homoeopathy, but the practice as defined by Hahnemann utilises it as the sole rationale for the medical application of its therapeutics.
An IHM practitioner will adhere to the following principles:
Every medicine will be tested on healthy people to ascertain the symptoms that the substance produces. The substance will be prepared in the same manner every time and be prepared to Hahnemann’s directions. In this day and age, many medicines are prepared by dry weight, and whether or not this alters the effect in using as curative medicine, is something we need to take note of. I personally try and find original plant material and make it myself, or find a pharmacy to make it for me. In the main, most medicines act in the same way as the original manufacture.
In taking a case, the IHM practitioner will only observe what has changed, and not pay overly more attention to the mind/emotional symptoms and will base the case prescription SOLELY as defined by the provings without interpretation, and use in the main the Materia Medicae of Samuel Hahnemann, and Materia Medicas that hold to proper medicine provings and not based on clinical symptoms only.
Given these criteria. the IHM practitioners will not use:
1/.Schuessler’s tissues salts. The principles for use is not based on similars and each tissue salt contains both the potency indicated AND mother tincture.
2/. Any variety of flower remedies. The remedies are based on dream and ‘intuitive’ usages, have not been made in accordance with Hahnemann’s directions and therefore have no homoeopathic provings for which to prescribe. There is no room for Flower remedies within the practice of homoeopathy, and as such should not be found in the pharmacy of a homoeopathic clinic. Use or acceptance of flower remedies goes against the Hahnemannian principles and diminishes both the therapy and the practitioner.
3/. Polypharmacy remedies. This is the most practised false application of homoeopathy in existence today. There are no provings of polypharmacy medicines. The mix of remedies is based on the individual provings and used to cover all aspects of a disorder in the collection of medicines prescribed. However, A+B+C+D etc is now ABCD and has a collective set of symptoms which do not equal the individual components and becomes a non-valid prescription with no scientific basis in homoeopathy.
4/. Application of medicines will be done in accord with the prescribed methods outlined in the Organon. There is no place for radionics or hair transmission. The PHYSICAL giving of the remedy must take place.
5/. There are a number of pharmacies producing remedies with Radionics and the Korsakoff method. Given Hahnemann’s advice to use LM or Q potencies, we recommend that IHM practitioners follow this advice and purchase LM 0/1 made from the 3c potency and make the ascending potencies themselves, an easy task, and therefore establish the correctness of the medicine. Hahnemann also directed to start with the lowest LM potencies, 1 2 or 3 and proceed from there. There is a tendency among European countries to start high, at 15 or 25. There is no equivalency between the potency scales and to assume there is is a false premise.
Any IHM practitioner who does not follow the Hahnemannian directives in his or her homoeopathic practice will be invited to resign or be removed from the IHM listing after discussions with the IHM board. We have found that the current poor practice of the therapy is due to the acceptance of all forms of practice rather than adherence to the medical principles as established.
Dr. Antonio Sitges-Serra (Barcelona, 1951) has exercised 40 years in public health , between surgery, research and consultation. Know the system and its diseases as well as the bodies of the thousands of patients who have passed through their hands. But Sitges-Serra is not a normal doctor: in his book, ‘If you can, don’t go to the doctor’ , published by Debate and Libros del Zorzal, and extended by the philosopher Manuel Cruz , he faces the pharmaceutical industry and diagnoses the worst disease of the 21st century: medical technoutopism.
QUESTION. Recently, Amancio Ortega gave some machines to hospitals.
REPLY. High precision scanners, yes.
P. Some said that Amancio is a philanthropist and others that wash his face, but reading his book, I realized something that nobody raised: that perhaps having these machines is worse than not having them.
A. No one raised it because technology is the dominant ideology. Few of us discuss this utopia, but machines often give more problems to hospitals than they solve. High precision scanners can be harmful to the health of citizens.
Q. But everyone wants more and better machines in their hospital.
A. And new drugs, progress without limits. It is a mechanism of self-defense, we want to continue in it, more, more, more, as if we were going to defeat death. But I think it’s a bad road. For now, it has led us to overdiagnosis.
Q. What is overdiagnosis?
A. With the most advanced detection technology, there are diseases that are not really such. There are no symptoms, the patient is fine, he goes to a simple review and, with the new super-scanner of last generation, they find a cancer of two millimeters in the thyroid. The doctor tells you: “We have seen a cancer of two millimeters.” And you think you are a cancer patient, and they treat you as such, although nothing really happens to you.
Q. Can a cancer be harmless?
A. Yes. He may never show his face. But once you’re overdiagnosed, you fall into a vicious circle of reviews that will make you dependent on the hospital, in addition to stress, fear and anxiety. And that, in case the doctor on duty does not want to give you chemo or even operate, always with the best intention, unleashing an unnecessary carnage. Well, that carnage was not caused by your cancer but its diagnosis. This is how early detection technology becomes a serious problem for your health.
Early detection technology has become a serious problem for your health
Q. Are there many people out there with harmless cancers that nobody has seen?
R. Very much, of course. When someone dies from any cause, from old age, for example, it is very common to find thyroid cancer in the body. 20% of patients who die of anything have it. If you buy this machine so fantastic that it detects tumors of less than two millimeters, you can end up removing the thyroid to 20% of the population for nothing. In South Korea, an absolutely slave country of technology, it’s just what happened. It was a massacre. Thousands of thyroids removed by harmless cancers that would never have appeared.
Q. That is to say that if they detect a cancer of two millimeters, do I not have cancer?
R. Exactly. Diagnostics increase with ultramodern machines, but not mortality. Why? Because they detect cancers that do not kill or give symptoms or anything. Another example: 80% of men have prostate cancer at death. He has died of something else, for example, from a heart attack, but he had that cancer since when it was known, without anyone seeing it and without giving symptoms. For the patient’s life, it is best not to be detected.
Q. You say many things that defy intuition.
Q. I know. There is also another problem in hospitals with the most modern machines: that of interpretation. Radiographic reading of a mammogram or anything else requires experience. If you don’t have it, you will raise false positives. Machines always need trained professionals, and constant innovation plays at the expense of the doctors’ learning curve, and therefore against the patient.
Q. When did things get complicated?
A. The twentieth century has been very powerful in the technological progress of medicine, but now the benefits of the novelties are very small and the cost is enormous. For example, many surgical interventions have tripled their duration compared to those of the 1990s, to be robotized. Therefore, the number of operating rooms needed increases. The robot makes the surgery much more complicated, much more expensive, much longer, and the results are no better than without a robot. But industrialists want to sell their inventions, and politicians and citizens are dazzled. That’s the techoutopism.
Now, the benefits of medical news are very small and the cost is huge
Q. What does the economy of a hospital mean, for example, a robot to operate prostate?
A. An initial expense of one and a half million, and annual maintenance of more than 100,000 euros. Plus the cost of teaching doctors how to use it. The big problem of health is the increase in costs: the cost increases every year, largely because unnecessary, but glamorous, products are bought. Health is between 20 and 25% of GDP, and it grows every year. Last year, 6%, while GDP grew by only 2%. If it weren’t for technoplaism, the costs would be greatly reduced. More GDP money could be dedicated to Justice or dependency. And besides, there are plenty of doctors.
Q. How? The opposite is always said, that doctors are missing.
A: Yes, but this is because we have created a hypermedicalized and hypochondriacal society. Look: when they asked Oriol Bohigas, the great city planner, how he would solve the traffic problem in Barcelona, he said: “Well, very easy, making the streets narrower.” This paradox can also be applied to medicine. If you are generating needs, you will always have more demand. If you widen the roads, you will have more cars.
Q. You advocate setting limits.
A. And for rethinking our relationship with death. The specialist doctor lives with his back to death. He is little compassionate and always pulls forward. There is always another medicine, another instrument, etc.
Q. We always expect that miracle.
A. We hope you invent something, and it is irrational. Technoutopism requires us to live with our backs to death. You talk to oncologists and death does not exist. For them, there is a drug, a CT scan and a tumor. And with that they play until the thing explodes. If we seriously reconciled with death, we could in question this health system. But you cannot say that a patient in his eighties must never enter the ICU, because they call you everything.
Q. Why shouldn’t you log in?
A. Because we know that an 85-year-old patient who spends a week in the ICU has a 70% chance of dying in the hospital, and another 30% of dying during the following year. The cost-effectiveness margin of the treatment is null. But, as the system pays, this is not valued in public medicine. And it should be the guide.
Q. What other examples of technotopism in contemporary medicine?
A. The so-called ‘breast cancer prevention’ is a brutal example. I say that it is better to forget about mammograms and dedicate those resources to putting in more nurseries, so that women can give birth sooner. It influences more that you do not die of breast cancer than advance maternity than 20 mammograms in 20 years. Preventive medicine has to do with changing bad social habits for health, and not with subjecting all women to free scanners from the age of 40.
5% of these thousand women with mammography will suffer an inadmissible masectomy
Q. Do periodic mammograms prevent women from dying of breast cancer?
A. Throughout a woman’s life, between 40 and 90, she has a 10% chance of dying from breast cancer and 90% of dying from anything else. That is, mammography deals with a disease of low prevalence. That to begin with, but, in addition, comparative studies have been done: one thousand mammographed women and one thousand non-mammogram women. Well, in one group four die, and in the other five die. Who does mammograms, then says that he has died 20% less, but this is a trap: a patient of a thousand does not justify that the other 999 women get a mammogram a year. But there is more: of those thousand mammographed women, 200 give the false positive. That is: they have to repeat the mammogram or have a biopsy. Finally, 5% of these thousand women with mammography will suffer an inappropriate masectomy. So it is better for women who do not have mammograms.
Q. Everything is full of ads, however, telling them to make them. And let’s look at cholesterol, and what a joke.
R. A hypochondriacal and overmedicated society. Of course. Social hypochondria has many factors: the press, doctors, industry, scientific societies, and so on. The bombardment of news and announcements about the dangers of falling ill creates anxiety. And it is an anxiety endorsed by the Spanish Society of Cardiology.
Q. Reading your book, I have had the feeling that the debate about vaccines is poisoned, and that the fact that the anti-vaccines are stupid gives white letter to the pharmacists to give us vaccines that we don’t need.
R. That’s right. Vaccines are good for the pharmaceutical industry. The debate revolves around a false dilemma. Vaccines, hygiene, antibiotics and minor surgery are the four main pillars of health in the twentieth century. No doubt. Now, when the pediatric vaccine schedule assumes 45 doses in six years, I say: are you sure? Because maybe we are subjecting the immune system of these kids to a bombardment that we do not know what will end. Because one thing is that you vaccinate diseases such as smallpox, tetanus, whooping cough, diphtheria, polio, etc., and another that we begin to expand the market: that if meningitis, that if pneumococcus, that if papilloma. .. There we are going. There are vaccines that only interest pharmaceutical companies, and they pass them, in part, because the debate is polarized.
There are vaccines that only interest pharmaceutical companies, and they pass them, in part, because the debate is polarized
Q. It is part of the medicalization of society, which you describe.
R. Sure. We do not want to die, nor do we want to have pain or sadness. Then death, pain and sadness are medicalized, and the industry wins, not the people. What happens when they lower the acceptable limit of blood cholesterol? That you have millions of patients who will need millions of doses of medication. Not to mention that other thing they do, which is to invent diseases.
Q. Regarding pharmaceutical companies, you say that many medications are sold before knowing if they are safe.
R. It is something impressive. 40% of drugs that have been proven deadly after starting to sell take two years to be recalled. Why? Because the development of the drug has been expensive, and they try to amortize it in the first years. The industry squeezes a lot because it knows that either the medicine will end up revealing a problem, or it is not as effective as it is sold, or a competitor will come out. How do they get it? With propaganda, and convincing doctors, sometimes with little honest methods. In oncology, this is very normal. Oncology is one of the most corrupt practices of medicine.
Q. That phrase has cloth!
R. Ya, ya. When you scratch the specialty a little inside … The vast majority of oncologists of a certain reputation charge directly from the pharmaceutical industry, or through trials, or in kind, or through congresses. Oncology is one of the specialties with the most investment of all kinds.
Q. Monday was Blue Monday, the saddest day of the year, so we have to go shopping to heal. I think it’s a good synthesis of what your book tells.
R. Ha ha! Yes, it is the medicalization of life, until Monday. They turn into illness (with their corresponding drug) sadness, sex, nutrition, the rule, menopause, ugliness, stupidity … Everything human is susceptible to treatment, and the industry expands its market. As Huxley said, medicine advances so much that we will soon be all sick.
The most overlooked fact regarding homoeopathy is that it is a medical practice.
For those that have an allopathic medical degree, there (logically) should be an advantage, yet the truth is that the advantage lies in first aid, and disease diagnosis and understanding disease progression via knowledge of the prognosis. If a medically qualified person does not understand homoeopathy, then the other knowledge does not help.
Hahnemann’s writings on homoeopathy, and the principles he invokes, are MEDICAL principles and not suggestions. Each principle is based on years of experimentation, and not open to interpretation or change like the sensation method, remedy families, periodic table polarities, personality constitutional prescribing, polypharmacy etc. All these are breaches of the Hahnemannian design of homoeopathy, the practice. Homoeopathy is a practice built on this law with specific directives for the usage of the medicines and application of the same. Hahnemann does encourage experimentation and development, but not outside of the medical principles he established. Its a waste of time and energy as he has tested every permutation of differences.
We will examine each principle in detail in coming posts.
Before we can discuss Principles, it is vital that the practitioner understands the rationale behind the approach of a homoeopath towards a sick patient.
Homoeopathy is a science and is focused on patient management of Disease. The process of analytics in managing a disease is based on a holistic overview of patient reaction to a disease influence. What is evident today in the poor training a homoeopath receives, is the harmful influence of the Swedenborg School of thinking (KENT) which is contradictory to the scientific mode of application as defined by Hahnemann and expanded on by Boenninghausen and others.
Hering and Kent and the influence of the American school of Homoeopathy did not influence the medical practice in the positive way the therapy displays it to be.
(Originally Published in British Hom. Journal as “Was Kent a Hahnemannian?”, Vol. 73, No. 2, Re- edited by Dr R.S.Mann after consultations with Dr. G. S. Hehr)
Kent has been hailed as a true disciple of Hahnemann.1 There should be a reassessment in light of the following contrast between the view of Kent and Hahnemann:
On “authority” and “experience”
“We must begin by having respect for law … Let us acknowledge the authority.”2
“… and medicine today, outside of homoeopathy, is a medicine of experience…It is necessary that the exact and proper position of experience should be realized … Experience has … only a confirmatory place. It can only confirmed that which has been discovered by principle…Experience leads to no discoveries … One who has no doctrines…imagines he discoveries by his experience”.3
HAHNEMANN: “Medicine is the science of experience…”4
“The true healing art is in its nature a pure science of experience …”5
“…the complete true healing art can never be the work of self-satisfied ratiocination…, but that the requisite for this … are only to be discovered but due attention to nature by means of our senses, by careful honest observations and by experiments conducted with all possible purity and in no other way…6
“I demand no faith at all and do not demand that anybody should comprehend it. Neither do I comprehend it; it is enough that it is fact and nothing else. Experience alone declares it, and I believe more in experience than in my own intelligence.”7
“But what and how much …can be determined by no speculative reason or unreason, but experience alone must determine…and in the domain of facts there is no appeal from experience…”8
On the relation of skin symptoms to internal malady
KENT: “But this very scientific ignorant doctor has made a failure: he has driven what was upon the surface and harmless into the innermost precincts of the economy and the patient is going to die as a result of scientific ignorance.”9
HAHNEMANN: “The diseases … springing from such one-sided destruction of the chief skin symptom (eruption and itching) which acts vicariously and assuages the internal psora (which destruction is erroneously called ‘Driving the itch into the body’)…”10
“All miasmatic maladies … are always present as internal maladies … before they show their local (skin) symptoms.”11
“… when the development of the (internal) venereal disease has been completed, only then diseased nature endeavours to mitigate the internal evil and to soothe it, by producing a local symptom…”12
“…some wretched casuists have considered as resulting from driving back of the poison out of the chancre into the interior body…”13
KENT: “Psora is the beginning of all physical sickness. Had psora never been established as a miasm on the human race, the other two chronic diseases would have been impossible. All the diseases of man are built upon … it (psora) goes to the very primitive wrong of the human race … that is the spiritual sickness from which … the race progressed into … the true susceptibility to psora…”14
HAHNEMANN: “…the ailments and infirmities of body and soul … (if they do not belong to the two venereal diseases, syphilis and sycosis) are … manifestations of (psora).”15
“In Europe and also in other continents … only three chronic miasms are known…”16
“….and indeed so many that at least seven-eights of all chronic maladies spring from it (psora) … while the remaining eighth spring from syphilis and sycosis, or from a complication of two of these three … chronic diseases, or (which is very rare) from a complication of all the three of them….”17
KENT: “Hahnemann could perceive this immaterial vital principle. It was something he arrived at himself, from his own process of thinking (but all historians mention that it was Joseph Barthez, b.1734, d.1806, who introduced the term “vital principle”18).
There was a paucity of individual ideas at that time… but Hahnemann thought much, and by thinking he arrived at the ideas contained in this (i.e. the 9th paragraph of the 5th edition of the Organon), which only appeared in the last (i.e. 5th.edition of 1833).”19
(Allusion to “vital force” appeared in the Chronic Diseases20 published in 1828, and in the fourth edition of the Organon that we shall refer shortly, Kent substitutes “simple substance for “immaterial vital principle” in the paragraphs subsequent to the one sited above – vide reference 19. This new expression appears to be Kent’s own coinage. Imputation of “much thought” to Hahnemann appears to be Kent’s projection of his own thinking, the result of which was the new expression. Hahnemann’s views on reasoning and speculation are clear in reference 8).
KENT: “…simple substance is endowed with formative intelligence…”21
HAHNEMANN: “… the instinctive, irrational, unreasoning vital force (instinktarige, verstandlose. keiner Uberlegung Fahige .. Lebnskraft — this could also be translated: instinctive, unable to reason/understand, without the capacity for reflection) 22 (the contrast between Kent and Hahnemann over the attributes of vital force is obvious from these words)…
“…unreasoning, merely animal vital force (die verstandlose, bloss aminal ische Lebenskraft).”23
KENT: “Hahnemann did not adopt any such theory as bacteriology”.
HAHNEMANN: “… the cholera miasm … grows into an enormously increased brood of those excessively minute, invisible creatures …”24 (How else could one have described bacteria at that time!)
Why was Kent so often wobbling off the pivot? Perhaps it was not for nothing that Jouanny wrote:
“The second trap is to do what certain absent-minded homoeopathic doctors do, namely to consider only the symptoms of the patient in his reaction to his disease, and in particular his psychic signs. This was the attitude of Kent and his spiritualistic school which went so far as to say that the pathognomonic signs of the disease have no importance in the selection of the homoeopathic drug.”
“This is a philosophical attitude which makes homoeopathy into theology, and considers man to be made only of the soul. There is a great danger here…”
“This attitude has practically destroyed homoeopathy in America where it was at one time a flourishing discipline. It is now practised by a few esoteric doctors.”
“One can say that this attitude is not in conformity with the methods set out and defined by Hahnemann, because generally the ‘psychic symptoms’ taken into consideration by the followers of Kent, are not experimental changes in the mental behaviour of a patient, but the psychological characteristics of susceptible types of individuals. This is the result of the subjective interpretation of the experimenter and the patient. These doctors select the homoeopathic drugs on the basis of psychic symptoms … such a practice can be justifiably criticized …”25
Kent’s homoeopathy is not necessarily always Hahnemannian. As Campbell recently put it : “Nevertheless, it does not take a very detailed study of the history of homoeopathy to show that modern practice actually differs in quite significant ways from Hahnemann’s own practice. In both England as well as America, for example, the influence of J.T.Kent, who imported certain ideas derived from Swedenborg, has been paramount since shortly after the turn of the century”.26
Hahnemann’s distinction between the responses of the animate and the inanimate; his view about adaptive responses of the organisms”, 28 his stress on the value of signals in biology;29 his almost foreshadowing of “the law of initial value” of Joseph Wilder,30 his near modern views on nutrition31 and his suggestions for psychological exercise32 are all missing from Kent’s writings. One feels constrained to ponder how far the words of Inglis (on the relation of Galen to Hippocrates) would apply also to the relation of Kent to Hahnemann.
“Ostensibly by the Hippocratic School, he was to subvert its teachings. Hippocrates, Galen admitted, had led the way … ‘He opened the road, I have made it possible’ … Galen was able to impose his views on how the road should be followed; and as a prolific writer, he saw to it that they were published.33
One method generally leads to a low success rate, If not outright failure.
In taking a case. A correct diagnosis would have been of equal importance
to the therapeutist and to the surgeon if each disease had a distinct cause, as characteristic of itself, as the disease is distinct from all others, however, this is not the case.
The same disease may arise from different causes in different cases, hence to the
therapeutist the diagnosis is of subordinate importance as a basis of treatment. It can be shown that constitutional peculiarities of a patient manifest themselves through certain concomitant symptoms which make a difference in the aggregate
of symptoms in each case. In each case of diseases bearing the same name, we find that the patient exhibits not only the symptoms of the named disease but also concomitant symptoms peculiar to the diseased patient and different from other diseased patients with the same disease name. Hahnemann realised that this combination of expressions of sympathetic disorders in other parts of the body now had become ‘Constitutional’ in its affection, and thus stopped being a local symptom, and the expression of the diseased patient has become an all-encompassing state.
These concomitant symptoms, along with other knowledge, force the homoeopath to relinquish the belief that the malady along with its local expressions is the sole object of treatment. The homoeopath is now forced to view the patient from a ‘causality’ view and look at the pattern of progression of development from all symptoms present, not just the local disease and in effect come to see that the sum of the symptoms is greater than just this new affection.
A clinical history, the basis for disease development in every individual, will necessitate the remedy having or corresponding to the sequence of physiological effects matching the patient’s disease in development. This disease ‘constitution’ in the medicine will be required to enable the patient to receive help from the similar. However, the homoeopath will take the FULL history and other episodes of dis-ease into account as well as the current issue.
Rational reasoning indicates that the development of diseases (with the same name) owes the difference in symptom exhibition simply because of the constitutional differences of each patient. To a therapeutist, the symptoms appearing in its evolutionary sequence represent the cause or a combination of causes of a particular disease condition.
So long as the disease is viewed as a local or anatomical problem, the question of determining the basis or indications of treatment, cannot be answered. A study of the clinical history of each case supplies the key to the solution of this problem.
This is one of the major differences in approach to treatment from allopathic therapeutics.
1 Kanjilal et al – An Appeal to the Homoeopaths of India to Save Homoeopathy. Hahnemannian Gleanings 1979,XLVI,471
2 Kent J.T. – Lectures on Homoeopathic Philosophy. P.19,Chicago : Ehrhart & Karl, 1954.
3 Ibid – P.43.
4 Dudgeon R.E. – Lesser Writings of Samuel Hahnemann. P.439, New Delhi: Swaran (reprint of New York; Willian Radde, 1852 edition)
5 Hahnemann S. – Organon der Heilkunst, P.7, Dresden: Arnold, 1819.
6 Ibid – P.15 -16.
7 Dudley P ed. – The Chronic Diseases by Samuel Hahnemann, P.124, f.n. New Delhi, Jain Reprint
8 Ibid –P.325
9 Kent J.T. – Lectures.P.27
10 Dudley P. – The Chronic Diseases, P.17.
11 Ibid – P.32.
12 Ibid – P.36.
13 Ibid – P.36 f.n.
14 Kent J.T. – Lectures.P146.
15 Dudley P. – The Chronic Diseases, P.8.
16 Ibid – P.9.
17 Ibid – P.14.
18 Castiglioni A. – A History of Medicine, P.586, New York: Alfred Knoff, 1958.
19 Kent J.T. – Lectures.P.76-77.
20 Haehl R. – Samuel Hahnemann: His Life and Work. P.136, New Delhi, B.Jain Reprint.
21 Kent J.T. – Lectures.P.79.
22 Hahnemann S. – Organon der Heilkunst, P.IV, Dresden and Leipzig, Arnold, 1829.
23 Ibid – P.146.
24 Hehr G.S. – Bacteriology and Homoeopathy.Br.Hom.J. 1982, 71,62,64-5.
25 Jouanny J. – Essentials of Homoeopathic Therapeutics, P.39, Laboratories Boiron, 1980.
26 Campbell A.C.H. – Editorial, Br. Hom. J., 1980, 69, 3.
27 Hahnemann S. – Organon der rationallen Heilkunde, P.5-8, Anm. Dresden, Arnold, 1810.
28 Dudgeon R.E. – Lesser Writings of Samuel Hahnemann. P.62, Para 289-290.
29 Hahnemann S. – Fingerzeige auf den homoopathischen Gabrauch der Arzneien in der bisherigen praxis. Neues Journal der practischen Arzneikunde von Hufeland 1807, 43.
30 Dudgeon R.E. – Lesser Writings of Samuel Hahnemann. P.34.
31 Hehr G.S. – Hahnemann and Nutrition. Br. Hom. J. 1981,70,208-12.
32 Hehr G.S. – Self awareness and Homoeopathy, Br. Hom. J. 1983, 72, 90-5.
33 Inglis B. – Natural Medicine, 0.18. London, Collins, 1979.
Before we start examining the principles of homoeopathy in-depth, this historical overview is worth noting.
The institute is a research organisation and as such, many thousands of documents are in our possession with many more having passed before our sight. To this end, we are in a position to post Hahnemann’s own words and his colleagues of the time from cited writings.
After reading, what do you understand about Disease, Hahnemann’s abilities and the principle of treating the disease with medicines?
The other statement will be found in Tract. iii, cap. 4, page 63 in the 1540 edition and page 67 in the 1556 edition, and runs as follows :—
quae maculæ et alia visa fuerunt ab antiquissimo ac doctissimo Hyppocrate, in diversis tum temporibus, tum etium epidemicis constitutionibus.”
I have always believed that it was to Sydenham we owed the combination of words ” epidemic constitution.” The idea conveyed by the words is, without doubt, to be found in Epidemics I and 111 of the Hippocratic Collection. Guillaume de Baillou, who closely followed the method and phraseology of Hippocrates in his Epidemiorum et Ephemeridum Libri Duo, published some years after 1616, the year of his death, and probably written at least twenty years before, does not use the term ‘ epidemic constitution.” Perhaps a search amongst the works of other writers of the sixteenth and first half of the seventeenth century would reveal the use of the word elsewhere.
Addendum.—Since writing the foregoing note I have found that unless he was relying on second-hand information, Sydenham had read Massa’s book. In Sect. 11, Cap. 11 of the Observationes Medica circa Morborum, etc. (page 106 of Greenhill’s Latin edition, published by the Sydenham Society), he refers to Massa and twelve other writers as being in favour of venesection in the plague. References to the subject in Massa’s book will be found on pages 35b, 49b and 66b in the first edition, and pages 37b, 52a and 70b in the second edition.
A STUDY of the historical background of Hahnemann’s time explains much of his reform work in medicine. And it is interesting that present-day changes in medical ideas were foreshadowed, a century ago, by Samuel Hahnemann.
He was born in Saxony in 1755. Many talents and strong urgings went to his make-up, including the ” glorious gospel of discontent ” with all that was senseless, useless, harmful, inept—which practically sums up the medicine of his day. He was a great linguist— master of many languages (including Arabic) at a very early age. At twelve years old he was already teaching the rudiments of Greek. His knowledge was voluminous, as was his memory. More than once in his early years he was in charge of, or closely associated with, large and important libraries (Hermanstadt and Dresden) ; and his erudition was commensurate with his opportunities.
At Leipsic ” the Saxon Athens ” in 1812, in order to obtain permission to lecture, he had to deliver a speech of qualification ” from the Upper Chair. This he delivered in Latin; it was entitled ” Dissertatio historico-medica de Heleborismo veterum.” In this speech, we are told, he was able to quote verbatim and give the location of the passages from manifold German, French, English, Italian, Latin, Greek, Hebrew and Arabic medical writers, and he could examine their views—either in disagreement or in extension. He quoted from fifty more or less known doctors, philosophers, and naturalists.
In chemistry, his methods of chemical analysis and some of his discoveries are still in daily use among us—among them his mercurius solubilis “—the black oxide, and in Crell’s Annals (1793) Hahnemann was already mentioned as the famous analytical chemist.”
In the treatment of the insane Hahnemann was amongst the great pioneers. Already in 1792 (in Pinel’s time) he advised humane treatment of the insane. He never allowed any insane person to be given painful bodily chastisement. There could be no punishment for involuntary actions; these patients deserved nothing but the pity and were always made worse and not better by such treatment. He even went further than Pinel, in advising psychotherapeutic measures.
One of his peculiarities was that he could do with very little sleep ; indeed it is recorded of him that for 40 years his custom was to sit up one night in four, studying. He was a prodigious worker ; was only one year short of 90 when he died, and in the course of his long life (according to Ameke) he published 116 large works and about 120 pamphlets. He was always ” filling gaps in his education ” as he expresses it, as when he studied botany, or ” took small journeys to learn mining science and metallurgy.” He was not only a chemist but a good musician and an astronomer, and he was versed in every branch of knowledge connected with medicine. Ameke says, ” When Hahnemann came out with his new system of medicine he was universally spoken of with respect and even reverence, but with regret for his folly. But, after a year or so, he was denounced as an ignoramus and a scoundrel.”
But his great work was in the field of therapeutics . He was, above all, a born physician and reformer. His great idea of similia was first communicated in 1796 in an essay on ” The new principle for ascertaining the curative powers of drugs,” and some examinations of the previous principles.
His three classical works are (1) his Organon of Medicine: In this, he justifies his position, and teaches how, and what to prescribe, and why; (2) his Materia Medica Pura, which embodies exhaustively the answers of the healthy human body to the assaults of morbid agencies or drugs: that is to say, the exact symptoms produced when drugs are tested on the healthy, in order to apply them, with assurance, for the healing of the sick of like symptoms ; (3) his Chronic Diseases—almost too much in the past, for even his keenest disciples and followers— is assuming new importance in the light of the discoveries of today. Those who study these works discover, with amazement, that Hahnemann—-in his views of disease, in his conception of the all-importance of vital resistance to disease, in his teaching that disease can only be cured by stimulating the resistance of the patient— is a modern of the moderns, abreast, always—when he is not ahead—of science, and that what he has to give us is exactly what medicine, all the world over, is now waking up to demand. One feels that Hahnemann is, at long last, coming into his kingdom.
The medicine of Hahnemann’s day was based on the assumption that sickness was caused by humours that had to be expelled from the body by every method that could be devised: expelled, not only by the natural organs of excretion, which were taxed to the limit but also by artificial and unnatural methods of excretion.
Exutories, cauteries, setong, moxas, fontanels, are meaningless names to our generation : of interest only to the historian of medicine. We can have no conception what a torture chamber was the medicine of Hahnemann’s day when all these barbarities were designed to provide ” new organs of excretion.”
The cautery.—Here iron at white heat, or some chemical agent, was employed to dig deeply these ‘ new organs,” into which dried peas were introduced, and compressed by means of a bandage. These wounds were given their daily supply of peas.
The seton.—Here the flesh was• pinched up, and an incision made by means of which a skein of cotton or silk was inserted. When the wound was dressed the skein was drawn out, and the part saturated with discharge cut off. The seton was applied to the back of the neck to drain foul humours from head, eyes, etc. ; to the region of the heart to ” clean and polish it up,” or to other parts of the body, to draw some organic derangement from liver, lung, joint, or for a dropsy.
The moca was a cone of some combustible material applied to the skin when its apex was set on fire. ” Here,” we are told, ” as the flame advances, the heat becomes more intense; the skin crackles and shrivels—turns brown—and is scorched till nearly black.”
APRIL—HIST. OF MED. 2 *
Prolonged blisterings with cantharides at times led to the loss of a limb: wounds were powdered with arsenic, often with fatal results. One would think, in reading of these things, that the devil was responsible for medicine in the days of Hahnemann.
Purgation, emesis, sweatings and salivation were also resorted to to an unmerciful extent, while ” issues ” were not only established but maintained for years. Above all, bloodletting, to an incredible degree, was in favour. Leopold of Austria, Count Cavour, the ” saviour of Italy,” and our own Princess Charlotte, were among the illustrious victims; while Raphael, Lord Byron, Mirabeau and a host of celebrities were, we are told, seriously injured by bleedings; and Goethe in his 82nd year, having had a serious hæmorrhage, was bled to the extent of two more pounds.
Hahnemann protested against these brutal and unnatural methods, which weakened the patients to the verge of incurability.
Granier, a French doctor, who wrote in 1858, contrasting homæopathy with the medicine that obtained even in his day, says: If it be not true that diseases can escape by cauteries, it is at least certain that they can enter the system by this means. It is really a new organ of absorption.”
Hahnemann denounces, in particular, the common idea that venesection draws off only the bad blood; that continual purging evacuates only the depraved humours ; and that a vesicating agent can select, collect and remove only injurious humours.
Against such practices, and against Broussais, who carried the custom of the times to a ridiculous length, earning for himself the nickname of ” the medical Robespierre,” and of whom it was said ” he had shed more French blood than Napoleon ” Hahnemann fulminated his thunder. It must •have required not a little courage to break away from what was deemed on all hands to be essential, and to treat acute inflammatory conditions with his small doses of aconite (which obtained the name of ” the homoeopathic lancet “), and to confess, as he did in 1833, that for forty years he had not ” drawn a single drop of blood, opened one seton, used pain-producing processes, etc. had never weakened patients by sudorifics, or scoured them out with emetics and laxatives, thus destroying their organs of digestion.” And this, while surrounded by anxiously watching adversaries, ready to pounce at the slightest mistake and his followers, seeing his results, and joyfully following in his steps, were unmoved even when haled into the Courts and prosecuted for not practising phlebotomy; and when even the great Hufeland, so just to Hahnemann, amid all the injustice and persecution• that he experienced, nevertheless was saying in 1830 that ” anyone who neglected to draw blood when man was in danger of suffocating in his own blood ” (that was the idea in regard to inflammatory fevers) ” was a murderer by omission.”
In regard to the necessity for bleeding in acute fevers, Hahnemann wrote, Anyone who has felt the tranquil pulse of a man an hour before the rigour that precedes an attack of acute pleurisy, will not be able to restrain his amazement if told two hours later after the hot stage has commenced, that the enormous plethora. present urgently requires repeated venesections. He will naturally enquire by what magic power could the pounds of blood that must be drawn off have been conjured into the blood-vessels of this man, which but two hours previously he hid felt beating in such a tranquil manner. Not a single drachm more of blood can now be circulating in those vessels than when he was in good health, not yet two hours ago.” He contends that “the sole true causa morbi is a morbid dynamical, inflammatory irritation of the circulatory system, as is proved by the rapid and permanent cure of general inflammatory fever by one or two inconceivably minute doses of aconite juice, which removed such irritation homoeopathically.”
One must admire his enormous courage—the courage of strong conviction— which, if it did not procure sudden, universal recognition for his system of medicine, at least civilized, and that speedily, medicine in general; not only by putting to
shame its degrading barbarities, but by proving that they were wholly unnecessary.
That this was so, we have curious evidence. In 1852 we find Professor Allison of Edinburgh broaching the famous theory that inflammatory diseases, which it had hitherto been necessary to treat by bloodletting and debilitating treatment, now no longer required that—but an utterly opposite—mode of treatment, because they had changed their type,” and were no longer what they used to be. He confessed that he was led to adopt the new treatment—or rather to abandon the old—chiefly from the report of physicians who had ” witnessed the practice of homæopathic hospitals on the Continent.”
Mark Twain—himself once a Mississippi pilot—in nautical phraseology pays his tribute to homoeopathy, for the purifying work it has accomplished in medicine.
” So recent is this change from a three or four thousand year twilight to the flash and glare of open day that I have walked in both, and yet am not old. Nothing today is as it was when I was an urchin; but when I was an urchin, nothing wag much different •from what it had always been in this world. Take a single detail for example—medicine. Galen could have come into my sickroom at any time during my first seven years—I mean any day when it wasn’t fishing weather, and there wasn’t any choice but school or sickness—and he could have sat down there and stood my doctor’s watch without asking a question. He would have smelt around among the wilderness of cups and bottles and phials on the table and the shelves, and missed not a stench that used to gladden him two thousand years before, nor discovered one that was of later date. He would have examined me, and run across only one disappointment—I was already salivated; I would have him there; for I was always salivated, calomel was 80 cheap. He would get out bis lancet then; but I would have him again; our family doctor did not allow blood to accumulate in the system. However, he would take a dipper and ladle, and freight me up with the old familiar doses that had come down from Adam to his time and mine; and he would go out with B wheel-barrow and gather weeds and offal, and build some more, while those others were getting in their work. And if our reverend doctor came and found him there, he would be dumb with awe and would get down and worship him. Whereas if Galen should appear among us today, he could not stand anybody’s watch; he would inspire no awe; he would be told he was a back-number, and it would surprise him to gee that that fact counted against him, instead of in his favour. He wouldn’t know our medicines; he wouldn’t know our practice; and the first time he tried to introduce his own, we would hang him.”
(And after giving many examples of the ancient practice, with its crude ideas, its horrible mixtures, etc., he concludes by declaring) :—
” When you reflect that your own father had to take such medicines as the above and that you would be taking them to-day yourself but for the introduction of homoeopathy, which forced the old-school doctor to stir around and learn something of a rational nature about his business, you may honestly feel grateful that homoeopathy survived the attempts of the allopaths to destroy it, even though you may never employ any physician but an allopath while you live.”
Hahnemann found himself in conflict too with the system, or rather want of system, in the prescription of medicines in his day. Here all was imagination, tradition, hoary authority. Of science, there was none. ” The life and health of’ human beings were made dependent on the opinions of a few, and whatever entered their precious brains went to swell the materia medica.” The god-like science, practical medicine,” had become a ” degrading commerce in prescriptions—a trade that mixes the disciples of Hippocrates with the riff-raff of medical rogues, in such a way that the one is indistinguishable from the other.”
Polypharmacy flourished to an unbelievable extent. We are told that the largest number of ingredients recorded in one prescription was four hundred. The famous Venice Treacle ” contained sixty-five ingredients: and I have before me a world-famed prescription of the ” mithridate,” of fifty ingredients, which was actually in the Pharmacopæia of 1785, at the time when Hahnemann was beginning his fight for purity and simplicity in medicine. ” Nature,” says Hahnemann, ” likes simplicity and can perform much with one remedy while you perform little with many. Imitate nature! ” And as early as 1797 he wrote, ” May I be allowed to confess that for several years I have never prescribed more than one medicine at a time, and I have never repeated the dose until the effect of the previous one had been exhausted.” He says that thus he has successfully cured patients, and has ” seen things he would not otherwise have seen.”
It was the chemists who, perceiving that the hope of their gains must vanish with the advent of homoeopathy, fought the iconoclast; got laws enacted to restrain him from preparing and dispensing his medicines, and drove him from city to city. No wonder that Hahnemann thundered, ” Away with this excessive mixing of medicines, this prescription tomfoolery! Down with the apothecaries’ privileges! Let the doctor have the freedom to make his own medicines and administer them to his patients. We cannot be shown the correct way by a deluding tradition.”
Hahnemann says that in his day, in order to decide on something positive in regard to the instruments of cure, the powers of the different medicines were inferred from their physical, chemical and other irrelevant qualities; also from their odour, taste and external aspect, but chiefly from impure experiences at the sickbed, where, in the tumult of morbid symptoms, only mixtures of medicines were prescribed for imperfectly described cases of disease.” (Dudgeon.)
Can one wonder that in his earlier days Hahnemann revolted not only against the senseless cruelty but the utter uncertainty of lawless medicine? He says:— My sense of duty would not allow me to treat the unknown pathological state of my suffering brethren with these unknown medicines. If they are not exactly suitable (and how could the physician know that, since their specific effects had not yet been demonstrated) they might with their strong potency easily change life into death, or induce new and chronic maladies, often more difficult to eradicate than the original disease.
The thought of becoming in this way a murderer or a malefactor towards the life of my fellow human beings was most terrible to me; so terrible and disturbing that I wholly gave up my practice in the first years of my married life, and occupied myself solely with chemistry and writing.”
Then, in the anguish of impotence when one of his own children was ill and suffering terribly from the treatment she underwent, he set his soul to discover, as he expressed it, ” if God had not indeed given some law, whereby the diseases of mankind could be cured.”
Where,” he cried, in that hour of agony, can I obtain certain and sure help with our present knowledge ?—based as it is on vague observations, hypothetical opinions, and the arbitrary views of disease in our pathologies.”
In this labyrinth, he avers, a man can only remain complacent who is ready to accept assertions in regard to the healing powers of medicines because they are printed in a hundred books.
He knew from experience what help was to be got from the methods of Sydenham and others—Boerhaave, Stoll, Quarin, Cullen.
Can it be,” he asks, ” that the nature of this science (as great men have said) is incapable of certainty? Shameful, blasphemous thought !—that Infinite Wisdom should be unable to create the means of assuaging the sufferings of His creatures. Surely there must be a reliable way of regarding disease from the right angle, and for determining the specific, safe, and reliable use of medicines.”
It was useless, as he had discovered, to ” seek the means of healing in arbitrary opinions—false conclusions “—or on the authority of ” highly celebrated men of delusions. ” Let me seek it,” he cried, ” where it may be near at hand, and where all have passed it by, because it did not seem artificial or learned enough, and was uncrowned with laurel for its system, its pedantry, or its high-falutin’ abstractions.”
It is curious that Lord Horder has recently re-echoed this cry of Hahnemann, after voicing the uncertainties of medicine. Speaking of ” the present painful pause in therapeutic advance,” Lord Horder said, ” From what part of the scientific horizon the light will come, it is not possible to say. The sky must be scanned in every quarter. Perhaps some promising direction has been overlooked. Has the physicist, or the chemist, or the biologist, perchance, something that would help them? Or will the lamp again be lighted by that strange and inexplicable flash of genius—the genius which scouts all science, because it is itself the mother of science? ”
To the patient seeker after Truth and Law come, sooner or later, revelation. And so with Hahnemann. The Law that he sought came to him as a flash of inspiration, as we shall see, and, once it was grasped, the rest followed, surely and faultlessly, so that no one, in all these hundred years, has been able to add to, or to take from, our legacy from Hahnemann. Once his eyes were opened, it was merely a question of devoting a long life to the elucidation of the Law, and establishing it as a practical basis of therapeutics.
Homoeopathy, the ” pathy of likes,” is said to date from Hippocrates: and, indeed, Hahnemann quotes the celebrated similia similibus curentur from ” the reputed writings of Hippocrates,” and he also shows, by his usual careful quotations, how the idea had been foreshadowed in the writings of half a dozen doctors in various countries, who ” had presentiments that medicines, by their power of producing analogous morbid symptoms, would cure analogous morbid conditions.” Thus ” Boulduc,” he says, recognized that the purging quality of rhubarb is the cause of its power to allay diarrhoea; Detharding conjectures that colic in adults is mitigated by infusion of senna, by virtue of its analogous effect of producing colic in the healthy; Bertholon confesses that electricity deadens and annuls, in disease, pain very similar in kind to that produced by electricity; Thiury testifies that positive electricity, though it accelerates the pulse, nevertheless retards it when it is accelerated by disease; Von Stoerck suggests, ‘ If the thorn-apple (stramonium) deranges the mind and produces insanity in the healthy, might it not, by changing the current of ideas, restore soundness of mind to the insane? ‘ Stahl, a Danish military physician, has expressed his conviction on this subject most distinctly. He says, ‘ The rule accepted in medicine to cure by contraries contraria contrariis ” is entirely wrong ‘: he is convinced on the contrary, that diseases vanish and are cured by means of medicines capable of producing a similar affection (similia similibus). Thus burns are cured by approaching the fire, frozen limbs, by the application of snow or very cold water, inflammation and contusions, by distilled spirits. In this manner, he is in the habit of curing habitual acidity of the stomach by means of a very small doge of sulphuric acid, in cases where quantities of absorbing powders have been used in vain.”
So near had this great truth sometimes ” been approached,” says Hahnemann, yet hitherto none had taught this homoeopathic method of cure; no one had put it in practice.” Still, he argues, if the truth is only here to be found, one would expect to find its traces in all ages, even though it remained unperceived for thousands of years.
Adams, in his Genuine Works of Hippocrates, says, ” There is nothing new in the Doctrine of Similars.” He goes on, ” The treatment of suicidal mania appears singular—give the patient a draught made from the root of mandrake, in a smaller dose than will induce mania. He ” (Hippocrates) ” then insists in strong terms that, under certain circumstances, purgatives will bind the bowels, and astringents loosen them: and he further makes the important remark that, although the general rule of treatment be contraria contrariis curantur, the opposite rule also holds good in some cases, viz., similia similibus curantur. The principles both of allopathy, and of homoeopathy, it thus appears, are recognized by the author of this treatise. In confirmation of the latter principle, he remarks ‘ that the same substance which occasions strangury will, sometimes, put a stop to it by removing its cause, and so also with cough.’ He estimates successful and unsuccessful practice according to the rule whether the treatment was rightly planned or not. For, he argues, what is done in ignorance cannot be said to be correctly done, even if the results are favöurable. ”
It was in 1790 when translating Cullen’s Materia Medica., and disagreeing with the author’s dictum that Peruvian bark owed its antipyretic power to its tonic effect on the stomach, that Hahnemann, as he says, made his first pure experiment with cinchona bark upon himself, and thereby discovered its power of exciting the familiar symptoms of intermittent fever.
He seems to have realized instantly the enormous importance of the discovery, which subsequent observations and experience with other drugs never failed to confirm. ” With this first trial,” he says, broke upon me the dawn that has since brightened into the most brilliant day of the medical art, that it was only by their power to make the healthy human being ill, that medicines can cure morbid states : and, even so, only such morbid states whose symptoms the selected drug can itself produce in the healthy.”
An episode with belladonna in a scarlet fever epidemic was also illuminating, in this connection, to one who knew the extraordinary similarity between the symptoms of scarlet fever and those of belladonna poisoning: the burning skin, the dry sore throat, the red rash, the dilated pupils, and the delirium.
In a family of which several members were attacked by scarlet fever, one, a child, whom he was treating with belladonna for some other ailment, remained immune. He thereupon gave this ” providential remedy ” to other children, who remained well, even when subjected to the greatest risk of infection. Here Hahnemann made his first successful experiments in homoeo-prophylaxis.
From his day onwards belladonna has been used by homoeopaths all the world over to protect from or to modify and to cure scarlet fever. And besides our minimal mortality, it has been the unfailing observation that cases so treated do not exhibit the sequelæ which are often the serious feature of attacks of scarlet fever.
Expressions of agreement from contemporaries as to the value of belladonna in scarlet fever are to be found in Hufeland’s Journal for May, 1812, etc. : and that Hufeland (the one big figure in medicine in his day) himself published in 1825 a work entitled The Prophylactic Effect of Belladonna, ascribing this efficacious remedy for scarlet fever to Hahnemann. And in the year 1838, the Prussian Government ordered the doctors of the country to use belladonna in small doses against the epidemics of scarlet fever which were prevalent at that time.
Claud Bernard, the founder of modern experimental medicine, said that it must develop along lines of clinical observation and experiment. But Hahnemann was before Bernard. Clinical observation had shown him the importance of the principle of similars, and he at once started his great work of experimentation and elucidation. Those who have called Hahnemann a mystic forget his great experimental work in the proving of medicines on healthy individuals, which is the scientific basis of homoeopathy.
Hahnemann realized that if the Law of Similars was ever to be practical it was imperative to test, or ” prove ” medicines as to their powers of vitiation human health, in order to have them at hand for curative purposes.
And here began a life-time of proving medicines, on himself first, then presently on a large circle of disciples and friends. ” At first,” he says, ” I was the only one who made the proving of medicinal powers the most important of all his duties ;
since then I have been assisted in this by a number of young men who have made experiments on themselves, and whose observations I have carefully reviewed.”
With what extreme care these experiments were conducted, checked, and registered, we are told. The drugs were put up in milk-sugar powders. The prover never knew what drug he was taking, and had no idea when the proving began. This, to eliminate unobserved symptoms, peculiar to the prover.
Provers had to bring their day-books to Hahnemann, who questioned them regarding observed symptoms, to get the verbal expression of their sensations and sufferings as accurately as possible, as well as the exact conditions under which the symptoms occurred. Their mode of life and diet were strictly regulated during a proving, so that alterations in health should be absolutely due to drug action.
Hahnemann says, ” Medicines should be distinguished from each other with scrupulous exactness with regard to their powers—and true effects upon the healthy body. For upon the accuracy of this proving depend life and death, sickness and health of human beings.”
And in regard to materia medica, he lays it down that ” a true materia medica will consist of a collection of genuine, pure, and undeceptive effects of simple drugs ‘ and that such a materia medica ” should exclude every supposition—every mere assertion and fiction: its entire contents should be the pure language of Nature, uttered in response to careful and faithful enquiry.”
By his provings, Hahnemann introduced an entirely novel and scientific method of studying drug-action. He demonstrated the effect of drugs on the living human being— surely a method far superior to the study of their toxic effect on animals! Even if drugs did affect animals in precisely the same way that they affected all other animals and humans—which is not the case !—what animal could initiate us into the suicidal impulses of aurum—the terror of death of aconite and Arsenicum—the terrors of anticipation (even to diarrhoea) of Argentum nitric, and gelsemium—the indignation and the effect on health of the bottled-up sense of injury of staphisagria —the fear of knives for the impulses they suggest of nux and Arsenicum—the shamelessness in mania and delirium of hyoscyamus—the indifference to loved ones of sepia and phosphorus ? These, and such symptoms, have led to the most brilliant curative work, and they can only be found by provings on sensitive men and women.
Hahnemann insisted that what a drug can cause, that, and that only, it can cure, whether in the mental or the physical sphere ; that its curative powers depend entirely on vital reaction to drug-stimulus; that the stimulus must be only suffcient to evoke reaction in organs rendered hypersensitive to disease; that reaction must be respected, and allowed to run its course before a repetition of the stimulus (should it be called for).
It is only when modern ideas are wandering into the realms of homoeopathy, with vaccines, that they begin to trade on the reactions of vitality—the essential teaching of Hahnemann, on which all our work has been based for 100 years. But even here dominant medicine seems to think that the dose should be the largest tolerated and that its repetition is a mere matter of opinion, or of individual practice, or of experience drawn from many experiments (at the expense of many patients), or of authority, when someone whose name is prominent lays down the law.
It has yet to grasp the idea, which we owe to Hahnemann, that there is law in all these things. Illustrations and corroborations come from all sides. The Arndt Law shows that the same poison, to the same cells, may be lethal, inhibitive, or stimulating, according to the largeness or the smallness of the dose : while Professor Bier endorses Hahnemann, as to the infinite Rensitiveness of diseased parts to the vital stimulus.
Hahnemann showed that: ” Homoeopathy is absolutely inconceivable without the most precise individualization.” The names of diseases should never influence the physician, who has to judge and cure diseases, not by names, but by the signs and symptoms of each individual patient. That, since diseases can only express their need for relief by symptoms, the totality of the symptoms observed in each individual case of disease can be the only indication to guide in the choice of the remedy.
Hahnemann ” knew no diseases, only sick persons.”
He taught that all parts of the body are intimately connected to form an invisible whole in feelings and functions ; that all curative measures should be planned with reference to the whole system, in order to cure the general disease by means of internal remedies. (Even an eruption on the lip, he says, cannot be accounted for, without assuming a previous and simultaneous diseased state of the body.”)
Dr. Haehl, of Stuttgart, in the preface to his Life of Hahnemann (1922), says :— At no other period has medical science, in reality, come so near to the fundamental ideas of homoeopathy as it does at the moment. A complete change of front in opinions is coming to the fore. An uninterruptedly progressive turn in science moves from an obsolete mechanical mode of observing the life-processes, to a biological and vitalistic one ; the development of sera, organotherapy, and prophylactic therapy, are irrefutable proofs of it. The names of Arndt, Behring, August Bier, Lewin, Hans Much, Krehl, Karl Ludwig Schleich, Hugo Schulz, H. Driesch and others, represent a number of directing points in this evolution which is taking place. Tuberculin, diphtheria serum, the various organ preparations and their mode of employment, the attention given to mental symptoms, to special bodily constitutions, and tendency to disease, show, in detail, how far this change has already been accomplished. And so to-day modern medicine is almost imbued with homoeopathic ideas and habits. Hahnemann’s teachings, which have destroyed the fundamentals, have acted for a whole century as a ferment in medical science, disintegrating, dissolving, remoulding and reconstructing. Traditional ideas, customs and methods have been overthrown and rendered unstable by this despised teaching of the much-ridiculed and persecuted innovator.”
This year, I have come to see that the problem in our therapy is a very simple one. People professing to be homoeopaths have not studied the principles and ethics as outlined by Samuel Hahnemann, Most have no idea of what homoeopathy is in reality. We are in the midst of false assumptions and wrong teachings on a scale never seen before.
To this end, The IHM will be presenting a series of posts outlining the most important requirements and unnegotiable standards to adhere to in order to be a successful practitioner. These are culled from Hahnemann’s own writings and therefore are not supposition or the IHMs thoughts and interpretation.
Coming soon to this blog.
This urgent message today is requesting that you do two very important things:
You may have heard about proposed new rules for homeopathy put out by the FDA. We were glad that the previous conceptually flawed and poorly worded rules (called “Guidance” by the FDA) were withdrawn recently.
In their place the FDA proposed a revised Guidance. This revised Guidance has some helpful changes and some detrimental ones.
Unfortunately, the detrimental ones are very detrimental, and we must now pressure the FDA to revise this guidance considerably.
We can do that by getting a very large number of people to ask for an extension while commenting on this new draft.
If you are familiar with the changes the FDA made, you can go directly to the FDA Comments page on the Americans for Homeopathy Choice site (https://homeopathychoice.org) There you’ll find out how to make a comment that will help us get an extension.
If you are outside the USA, click here:
If you are inside the USA, click here:
(this uses the voter voice software which allows people to submit a comment in just a few clicks)
If you want to know more about the changes, here’s a summary of the most important points:
But this nonsense declaration means that under federal law all homeopathic drugs will become technically “illegal” and subject to withdrawal from the marketplace. If the FDA just thinks there is a problem with a homeopathic medicine, it can withdraw it forever without conducting any sort of investigation.
First, no one can patent homeopathic remedies because they are made from common substances. So, no company would be able to make back the huge cost of going through the NDA.
Second, the NDA is designed for pharmaceuticals and is unable to test the effectiveness of a medicine that is tailored to each individual rather than given to a large mass of people who supposedly have the same condition. Hence, it is unlikely that any homeopathic medicine would be ruled both safe and effective by the FDA.
That means that when the FDA removes a homeopathic remedy from the market, it will be the equivalent of banning it forever. And, don’t think that you’ll be able to order your remedies from abroad. The FDA will just stop them at the border.
I could tell you more, but what I’ve told you so far should convince you that we must get the FDA to change its unreasonable and misinformed guidance to reflect the realities of homeopathic medicines: They are nontoxic, mild, effective and have few, if any, side-effects.
And, homeopaths use them in ways that individualize treatment. That this is the best way to treat patients was discovered by Samuel Hahnemann 200 years ago. (Pharmaceutical companies are only now discovering that Hahnemann was right. But this hasn’t sunk in at the FDA.)
Help us get an extension so that there will be enough time to prepare a response properly. We need the time in order to show the FDA step-by-step how to change the Draft Guidance in ways that will protect rather than imperil homeopathy.
Please click on the button below to go to a form that will allow you to make a comment to the FDA in just a minute or two.
With urgency and gratitude,
Americans for Homeopathy Choice
P.S. Please send this message on to anyone you can think of who cares about homeopathy. Time is running out!