It has been attempted to produce, by means of scarifying instruments, a bleeding at the nose, in imitation of that sometimes occurring naturally, in order to mitigate, for example, the attacks of a chronic headache. By this means a large quantity of blood could be made to flow from the nostrils and weaken the patient, but the relief afforded was either nil, or much less than the instinctive vital force would procure at another time, when, of its own accord, it would cause but a few drops to flow.

A so-called critical perspiration or diarrhcea, produced by the ever active vital force after a sudden indisposition excited by anger, fright, a sprain or a chill, will be much more successful, at least for the time, in relieving the acute disease, than all the sudorific or purgative drugs in the pharmacopoeia, which only make the patient worse, as daily experience shows.

But the vital force, which of itself can only act according to the physical constitution of our organism, and is not guided by reason, knowledge and reflection, was not given to man to be regarded as the best possible curative agent to restore those lamentable deviations from health to the normal condition, and still less that physicians should slavishly imitate its in perfect morbid efforts (to free itself from disease), and that with operations incontestably more inappropriate and severe than its own, and thereby conveniently spare themselves the expenditure of reasoning, reflection and judgment requisite for the discovery and for the practice of the noblest of human arts – the true healing art – while they allege their bad copy of the spontaneous efforts of doubtful utility made by the crude natural force for its relief, to be the healing art, the rational healing art!

What sensible man would imitate the efforts of the organism for its own preservation? These efforts are in reality the disease itself, and the morbidly affected vital force is the producer of the visible disease! It must, therefore, necessarily follow that all artificial imitation, and likewise the suppression of these efforts, must either increase the disease or render it dangerous by their suppression, and both of these allopathy does; these are its pernicious operations which it alleges to be the healing art, the rational healing art!

No! that exquisite power innate in the human being, designed to direct in the most perfect manner the operations of life while it is in health, equally present in all parts of tile organism, in the fibres of sensibility as well as in those of irritability, the unwearying spring of all the normal natural functions of the body, was not created for the purpose of affording itself aid in diseases, not for the purpose of exercising a healing art worthy of imitation. No! the true healing art is that reflective work, the attribute of the higher powers of human intellect, of unfettered judgment and of reason selecting and determining on principle in order to effect an alteration in the instinctive, irrational and unintelligent, but energetic automatic vital force, when it has been diverted by disease into abnormal action, and by means of a similar affection developed by a homÏopathically chosen remedy, to excite in it a medicinal disease somewhat greater in degree, so that the natural morbid affection can no longer act upon the vital force, which thus, freed from the natural disease, has now only the similar, somewhat stronger, medicinal morbid affection to contend with, against which it now directs its whole energy and which it soon overpowers, whereby the vital force is liberated and enabled to return to the normal standard of health and to its proper function, ‘the maintenance of the life and health of the organism,’ without having suffered, during this change, any painful or debilitating attacks. homÏopathy teaches us how to effect this.

Under the methods of treatment of the old school I have just detailed, no small number of patients certainly got rid of their diseases but not of those of a chronic (non-venereal) character; only such as were acute and unattended with danger; and even these they were only freed from by such circuitous and tedious ways, and often so incompletely, that the results of the treatment could never be termed cures effected by a gentle art. Acute diseases of a not very dangerous kind were, by venesections or suppression of one of the chief symptoms through the instrumentality of an enantiopathic palliative remedy (contraria contrariis), kept under, or by means of counter-irritant and derivative (antagonistic and revulsive) remedies, applied to other than the diseased spots, suspended, until the natural time for the duration of the short malady had expired. These methods were, consequently, indirect, and attended with loss of strength and humours, so much so that in patients so treated the greatest and most important measures for the complete removal of the disease and for the restoration of the lost strength and humours remained to be performed by Nature herself – by the life-preserving power which, besides the removal of the natural acute disease, had also to combat the effects of improper treatment, and thus it was able, in cases unattended by danger, gradually to restore the normal relation of the functions by means of its own energy, but often in a tedious, imperfect and manner.

It remains a very doubtful question whether the natural process of recovery in acute diseases is really at all shortened or facilitated bv this interference of the old school, as the latter cannot act otherwise than the vital force, namely, indirectly; but its derivative and counterirritant treatment is much more injurious and much more debilitating.

The old school has yet another method of treatment, which is termed the stimulating and strengthening system25 (by excitantia, nervina, tonica, confortantia, roborania). It is astonishing how it can boast of this method.

25. It is properly speaking, enantiopathic, and I shall again refer to it in the text of the Organon (¤ 59).

Has it ever succeeded in removing the physical weakness so often engendered and kept up or increased by a chronic disease with its prescriptions of etheric Rhinewine or fiery Tokay? The strength gradually sank under this treatment, and all the lower, the greater the quantity of wine the patient was persuaded to drink, because the source of weakness, the chronic disease, was not cured by it, because artificial stimulation is followed by relaxation in the reaction of the vital force.

Or did its cinchona bark, or its amara, so misunderstood, so multifarious in their modes of action, and productive of quite different kinds of injury, give strength in these frequently occurring cases? Did not these vegetable substances, said to be tonic and strengthening under all circumstances, as also the preparations of iron, often add to the old disease new sufferings, by virtue of their peculiar pathogenetic effects, without relieving the weakness proceeding from an unknown disease of long standing?

Has any one ever succeeded in diminishing in the very least the duration of the incipient paralysis of an arm or a leg, so often arising from a chronic dyscrasia, by means of the so called unguenta nervina or any other spirituous or balsarnic embrocations, without curing the dyscrasia itself. Or have electric or galvanic shocks ever been attended with any other result in such cases, than a gradually increasing, and finally absolute, paralysis, and extinction of all muscular and nervous irritability in the affected limbs?26

26. Those affected with hardness of hearing were relieved by moderate shocks from the voltaic pile of the apothecary of Jever only for a few hours – these moderate shocks soon lost their power. In order to produce the same result he had to make them stronger; until these stronger shocks had no effect; the very strongest would then at first excite the patientsÍ hearing for a short time, but at length left them quite deaf.

Did not the renowned excitantia and aphrodisiaca, ambergris, lacerta scincus, cantharides tincture, truffles, cardamoms, cinnamon and vanilla invariably bring about complete impotence when used for the purpose of restoring the gradually declining sexual power (which always depended on an unobserved chronic miasm)?

How can credit be taken for the production of a stimulation and invigoration of but a few hoursÍ duration, when the result that must follow and which is permanent – according to the laws of all palliative action – is a directly opposite state, the rendering of the disease incurable?

The little good that the excitantia and roborantia did for recovery from acute diseases (treated according to the old method) was a thousand times outweighed by their ill effects in chronic maladies.

When physicians of the old school do not know what to do in a chronic disease, they treat it blindly with their so-called alterative remedies (alterantia); among which the horrible mercurialia (calomel, corrosive sublimate and mercurial ointment) occupy the foremost place – which they allow to act in such large quantities and for so long a time on the diseased body (in non-venereal diseases!) that at last the health is by their destructive effects completely undermined. They thus certainly produce great alterations, but invariably such as are not beneficial, and they always utterly ruin the health by their improper administration of this excessively injurious metal.

Samuel Hahnemann
Samuel Hahnemann (1755-1843) was the founder of Homoeopathy. He is called the Father of Experimental Pharmacology because he was the first physician to prepare medicines in a specialized way; proving them on healthy human beings, to determine how the medicines acted to cure diseases.

Hahnemann's three major publications chart the development of homeopathy. In the Organon of Medicine, we see the fundamentals laid out. Materia Medica Pura records the exact symptoms of the remedy provings. In his book, The Chronic Diseases, Their Peculiar Nature and Their Homoeopathic Cure, he showed us how natural diseases become chronic in nature when suppressed by improper treatment.