HOMOEOPATHY AS A SCIENCE


Hahnemann did not belong to the materialistic school. He knew that he was dealing with forces which transcended his natural senses, except in so far as their activities were displayed in their working through matter….


LESSER WRITINGS WITH THERAPEUTIC HINTS By E.A. Farrington, M.D.

The Art of Medicine claims great antiquity, but the Science of Medicine yet awaits a discoverer.

More than a century ago, Hahnemann’s labors initiated the genuine art of medicine. But not one of his theories has ever stood the test of experience. What he stated as facts stand as firmly now as when they were promulgated. But Science, defined as knowledge “methodically digested and arranged” was never aided by his theories. Where has he consistently explained the law of cure? Was his psoric theory scientific? True, the facts announced in his Organon as to the way to treat the sick, how to select and change the remedy, to make provings, etc., are undoubtedly correct. Equally true is it that remedies acting from within out, from more to less vital parts, will be most likely indicated in chronic diseases. But his itch hypothesis is readily disproved.

The same applies to all subsequent attempts at establishing Homoeopathy as a Science.

What is this? It is because Homoeopathy is not a science? No. It is because genuine Science does not appear at the the present day. It is because investigators are plunging more and more deeply into materialism.

Darwin’s inexcusable offence does not consist in his promulgation of the absurd theory of the origin of man, but rather in the anti-spiritual direction of his whole line of study. With an utter contempt of revelation, he manufactures the moral sense of men out of the necessities of their living together peacefully. And yet we know that true morality springs not from man but from heaven.

But Darwin is not an isolated example of falsity in Science. Huxley and Tyndall, Proctor, and indeed the entire crops of investigators from A to Z, turn their conceited minds earthward only, and so learn nothing of higher import than what appertains to the plan of their senses.

Now the same pall overhangs Homoeopathy. Hahnemann did not belong to the materialistic school. To him the plant or root from which he made his tincture was not inert matter alone, but contained a living principle which was not Nature but life. He knew that he was dealing with forces which transcended his natural senses, except in so far as their activities were displayed in their working through matter. Hence his studies led him to the process of potentization of drugs. These are not claimed as spirit. We cannot escape from matter while we are in this world. So his method did nothing but rid spiritual forces of weighty matter, allowing them to act in the finest particles of matter only. Thus disinthralled, his remedies were free to act above the crude laws of physics, independent of gravity and of Chemistry, but still within the bounds of matter.

We are gifted with remedies then which obey laws new to the physician. Their subtle movements are marvellous to him who has been accustomed to the more superficial phenomena of Philosophy Chemistry, etc. He was wont to investigate drug action from his standpoint. He saw in a very general way, that certain medicines influenced certain functions or organs, and so constructed, a chemico-physiological Materia Medica; one full of fallacies, because even what of truth it contained was prevented by misapplication.

The danger which threatens our system of medicine lies in the fact that we are being dragged into materialism. We are so wedded to Allopathy that we cling with obstinacy to her false and crude notions. We seem to think that Homoeopathy rests on Allopathy as does a house on its foundation; and when we feel insecure in the superstructure, we descend to the cellar for aid. There is not one single truth in Allopathy perse. If there is, then just to that degree is our school false; for the two are diametrically opposite.

But, it may be asked, is there no truth in pathology and diagnosis, in the physiological investigation of drug effects, etc.? Emphatically no, as sciences.

To, clearly apprehend the truth of this statement, we must acquaint ourselves with the genuine doctrine of order in Nature.

Generals are formed of particulars, the latter being incomparably the most important.

Take, by way of illustration, the human body. In a very general analysis, it is composed of organs. Each organ is made up of tissues. Each tissue is divisible into molecules. Beginning with a single organ, as for instance, a muscle, we find it composed of fibres, these of fibrillae, and each fibrilla of smaller parts. As we pursue our analysis, we still find each microscopic portion a minute effigy of the whole. But just as in the potentized medicine so here the properties of the muscle are discovered much more clearly, and are seen to be numerous and quite different from what the undivided muscle would exhibit. We are accumulating particulars, and find them more and more complex as we advance.

The same applies to the practice of medicine. It is not alone sufficient to learn the general range of action of a drug or an outline of a disease, but also and pre-eminently the peculiarities of each. These when discovered so far outweigh the rest, that they must be used in every accurate prescription.

Pathology, as dogmatically taught, is not true. Arbitrary boundaries are given to diseases, and this artificial production is definitely named. Such a process of thought is too general to be practical and too superficial to escape the fallacies of appearances. A synthesis is correct only when its component elements are. Baptisia develops a picture of Typhus; Arsenic of Cholera Asiatica; Bryonia produces pseudo-membranes, etc; but unless analysis reveals the individual symptoms in these cases respectively, the conclusion is vague and uncertain.

Objection, it will be seen, is not raised against pathological facts, many of which are true, but to the manner of their construction into a science.

Such facts enable us to interpret symptoms, and place some estimate on their relative value. They aid in the forming of the “totality”, They assist in forming a prognosis. That they only assist, however, is because the course of a disease, subsequent to Homoeopathic prescription, is not the unqualified course it would pursue unmodified. A Typhoid patient, for example, might exhibit an unmitigated fever, with evening exacerbation, bloody stools and tympany. But if, after the similimum, the mental symptoms lessen, or the latest becomes less intense, our prognosis is qualified thereby, despite the gravity of the remaining symptoms.

Schussler’s offence does not consist in understanding Physiology and Pathology, but in dragging them into therapeutics and in recklessly misapplying them. Had he, at the suggestion of Physiology, proved his twelve remedies, he would have acted rationally and effectively.

All medical questions find confirmation or refutation before the test of the laws of the Organon, not before Allopathic hypotheses or Homoeopathic adoptions from the old school. Indeed we may go farther and assert that Physiology itself must be tried before the same tribunal; for is not living power superior to the lifeless disclosures of the dissecting-knife or the torture-born phenomena of vivisection?

That Pathology as at present taught is arbitrary is quite evident. A child suffering from Membranous Group received by the advice of the consulting physician, belladonna. To the astonishment of the attending doctor the laryngeal spasms ceased, and the child rapidly recovered.

Now, in the language of Pathology, Croup is an inflammatory affection attended with the formation of a pseudomembrane. Transferring this definition to therapeutics we must prescribe a drug which causes a false membrane. Teste says the Bryonia: Baehr and Kafka, Iodine, because of their pathological relation. But such teachers are just the drags who would tie us to Allopathy. The attending physician in the case quoted agreed with them, and but for the genuine prescription of counsel the little sufferer would have fallen a victim to their eclecticism.

It is true that there was a pathological condition in which the Belladonna state closed, namely, the spasm of the glottis; but this state was not determinable from the arbitrary study of Croup but from the analytical study of the individual case. Thus was formed a correct synthesis.

It is not so that our first duty is to our patient. Our first duty is to the truth, which, when loyally served, best enables us to do the greatest good the sick.

We must learn the undiscovered rules that regulate the profound workings of our potentized drugs. We must extend our knowledge of the relations of remedies. We must study Physiology from our new standpoint.

To aid us in our labors, to at least start us in the right direction, we must rationally comprehend and apply the rules which Hahnemann has left us.

This unwholesome fidelity to the researches of the old school is the legitimate result of materialism, which believes only in the tangible. It obscures thought and throws doubt over all interior mental operations.

So long as we keep our minds bound to the vague generalization of the Allopaths, we will never advance one step forward, and will sooner or later utterly discard what has already been taught in the Organon.

The only hope for genuine medicine is in the unprejudiced investigation of high potencies. It is in their study that we shall find the complex phenomena of diseased processes phenomena which will show Pathology as now taught to be a tissue of fallacies, however true are its disjointed facts.

Until our united efforts tend in this direction, we need not hope for the establishment of Homoeopathy as a perfect art, much less as an exact science.

E. A. Farrington
E. A. Farrington (1847-1885) was born in Williamsburg, NY, on January 1, 1847. He began his study of medicine under the preceptorship of his brother, Harvey W. Farrington, MD. In 1866 he graduated from the Homoeopathic Medical College of Pennsylvania. In 1867 he entered the Hahnemann Medical College, graduating in 1868. He entered practice immediately after his graduation, establishing himself on Mount Vernon Street. Books by Ernest Farrington: Clinical Materia Medica, Comparative Materia Medica, Lesser Writings With Therapeutic Hints.