Homoeopathy its Fundamental Principles

In this sixteenth section: “Neither can the Physician free the vital force from any of the, morbid disturbances.” No, because the life force being an immaterial force like electricity, there is nothing to purge out, but a simple vital perversion to be corrected, and as the wrong is essentially immaterial, nothing but an immaterial something can be similar enough to it to act upon it as a curative. A material substance may change the organism and thereby suppress or suspend an immaterial wrong, but the latter will return so soon as the former, its medium, resumes its normal conductivity.

It will be observed at once that the essentials of cure do not exist in operations upon the organisms, and as material substances operate largely through the organisms, the true disease is not reached. The object then must be to avoid operating upon the organism and essentially through the vital impulses by correcting the perverted vital activities. The causes of disease existing in a highly attenuated form are similar in equality to the vital dynamis; hence the affinity or susceptibility. This same affinity must be acquired by a drug substance. The attenuation must be carried on until a correspondence of spheres has been reached, or until resistance is no longer possible. The point of the highest degree of similitude in quality between two activities is variable, as it is in a degrees observable in a very wide range of attenuation, as many quick cures are observed from low attenuations, but, more commonly, the high and highest attenuations furnish the most striking examples. That low potencies cure, nobody disputes; and this does not refute the doctrine; but it must be admitted that it is by virtue of the inherent dynamic principle that it is curative, though more feebly curative in the low than when the drug it attenuated to a quality equal to the quality of the attenuated disease cure and the qualitative vital dynamism. The striking changes sometimes observed from low attenuations are the results of primary action on the organism which Hahnemann seeks to avoid. To bring about such results medicines must be repeated, while a single dose of the attenuated medicine would prove curative, and not influence the organism primarily. From a practical standpoint let us look upon the results of obeying the instructions of the master, who was always guided in his later years by the doctrine of the sixteenth section, and contrast them with the result of those who disobey this teaching.

The former class has followed closely the master’s teachings, accepting the dynamic doctrine, and in this line have they made their cures, with the same evidence claimed by the other class, simply the patient’s recover. They have not felt the need of other methods than those taught by Hahnemann. They have not gone backwards, but, on the contrary, they have made some progress. How have they progressed? Let us see. If you will consult section 41 of the Organon you will see. Here we see that Hahnemann declares it almost impossible to eradicate some diseases because they had been complicated with drugs having no relation to the disease. He says that his remedies were always capable of curing effectually all simple diseases. Hahnemann then used but thirtieth cent. potency when this section was written with few exceptions. What have his faithful followers to say as proof of the truth of the doctrine and as proof of progress? That many of these most complicated diseases ran be wiped out. That the drug symptoms can be subdued by very high attenuations, leaving the simple original disease to manifest itself through the natural medium, when it can be cured by the thirtieth potency of the master. They who have rejected this doctrine as a dogma have never seen this work and they never will. Yes, we shall progress if we observe facts, and unflinchingly cling to the doctrines of the immortal Hahnemann. Let us look at the contrast. What can be said of this class? Their cures are only a deception. Had they really cured their cases they would not need to resort to the latest whim of an empirical profession. They have abandoned the teaching of the sixteenth section, and what is the result? They know that they cannot cure the sick and they even refuse to believe that anyone else can. You never dispute a cure where it is in keeping with your daily observations. They say that ague must have Quinine, when the follower of the master cures all his cases with the attenuated appropriate remedy. The materia medica that has been found so satisfactory in the hands of Hahnemann and his followers has been a failure and it needs revising. There must be something wrong and we want no greater evidence of their failure than that the chief defamer, J. P. Dake, requires in his practice a large stock of Warner’s sugar- coated pills, composed of crude medicines. If this be true of the chief, what in the name of heaven must the lesser lights need, who must, of course, be less skilled? They have declared that any one who simply selects his remedy under the Law of Similars is as high as he can attain in the art of healing; and he may thereafter cover his patients with mustard, and apply all the local measures he chooses. Even they say that the local treatment is assisted by the internal remedy.

The first departure from the dynamic doctrine is dangerous and leads toward non- success, and careless method is the outcome. Safety comes from simply not following the law of selection, but also the teaching of the sixteenth section must be heeded. Look at the alternation departure, and see the laziness of his thoughts. Examine the prescription file in any drug store of a large city. What do you find? Simply a lot of prescriptions called homoeopathic whose only element of Homoeopathy is the signature of a long Professed homoeopathic practitioner.

Hahnemann regarded this vital dynamis as a unit of force (see section 15), and the departure from health as a unit of force. We cannot study the sixteenth section and ignore this portion of the dynamic doctrine. How absurd must it appear to one who has a clear comprehension of these truths to consider for one moment the problem of alternation which the master has so unequivocally condemned in section 272, and its note. Take a mental state that clearly indicates Nux vomica, and associate it with a Pulsatilla menstrual condition, with menses too late, scanty, and pale. In the former Pulsatilla is contra- indicated by the crabbed temper; in the latter Nux is contraindicated by the conditions of the menstrual flow. The two, therefore, are contra-indicated, neither of them corresponding to the unit of force known by the totality of symptoms. Can it be possible that by combining them it will make either or both homoeopathic to the demand of this unit? Hahnemann everywhere speaks of using only such medicines as are accurately understood by having been proved on the healthy human body. Here we have a compound about which little is known. Can it appear rational to suppose, or assume, that with a compound unknown, composed of elements neither of which is homoeopathic to this unit of force, that they can act uniformly curatively? These departures, wherein the doctrine of the sixteenth section is not heeded, are the foundation of all ill-success; of the cry for a revised materia medica, and of so-called modern Homoeopathy. I must say again, that modern Homoeopathy is built out of the departures from the doctrines of the immortal Hahnemann. These men have found the materia medica so inadaptable to their wants, that a majority of their prescriptions are composed of crude drugs. These departurists have so departed from the methods of Hahnemann that the homoeopathic profession as a mass is today but a caricature, having violated every principle of the philosophy that has anything distinctive.

They may find momentary comfort in it, but every true man must feel like uttering, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do’.

James Tyler Kent
James Tyler Kent (1849–1916) was an American physician. Prior to his involvement with homeopathy, Kent had practiced conventional medicine in St. Louis, Missouri. He discovered and "converted" to homeopathy as a result of his wife's recovery from a serious ailment using homeopathic methods.
In 1881, Kent accepted a position as professor of anatomy at the Homeopathic College of Missouri, an institution with which he remained affiliated until 1888. In 1890, Kent moved to Pennsylvania to take a position as Dean of Professors at the Post-Graduate Homeopathic Medical School of Philadelphia. In 1897 Kent published his magnum opus, Repertory of the Homœopathic Materia Medica. Kent moved to Chicago in 1903, where he taught at Hahnemann Medical College.