There are, today, many issues, many problems, many questions, and many subjects, with many men of many views on either side of all.
It will be my aim, during the few minutes allotted me, to increase the number of men who agree on the most vital subject of Homoeopathic philosophy and to decrease the number of views on the same subject. I shall try to do so by showing that, while many of our views seem different, they, in reality, are not. The apparent differences are due to seeing things from different view-points; and our individual viewpoint is the product of our inheritance, our surrounding, and our education- in a word, due to our make-up.
Before going further let us get together on the word philosophy. Webster defines it as: 1st, “The knowledge of the causes of all phenomena both of mind and matter”; 2nd, “A particular philosophic subject”; and 3rd, “A calmness of temper”. I trust we may all possess the last while discussing the other two.
On what particular points do many of our profession differ concerning homoeopathic philosophy and practice? We differ on the following: (1) [ See bibliography].
a. Definition of
b. Importance of.
a. Definition of
b. Classification of
c. Importance of knowledge of
d. Symptoms of.
a. Size of
b. Repetition of.
IV Etiology (Causes)
a. Knowledge of
b. Importance of in selecting the indicated remedy.
c. Importance of their removal.
d. Importance of in making a diagnosis and giving of prognosis.
a. How to determine.
b. Relation to the repetition of the dose
c. Efficiency of.
a. Definition of
b. Classification of
c. Essential of
d. How to secure, arrange and rank.
VII Our Remedies.
a. Their action and reaction.
b. How they act.
c. Primary and secondary action of
d. Whether antidotal, complementary or inimical.
e. Their elective affinity for tissues and organs.
f. The manner of selecting and administering them.
VIII auxiliary Treatment
a. Definition of
b. Importance of.
Our individual knowledge on the above points (“Phenomena”) surely varies enough to give us many views on our “particular philosophic subject”. Let us, therefore, with a “calmness of temper” study these different viewpoints and attempt to reduce their number.
Let us take the common definition (2), viz: “The recognition of a disease by its symptoms”. On this we can all agree. But, but, when it comes to the importance of diagnosis there are nearly as many (1) views as there are individuals. “Why recognize a disease?” “Homoeopathists should have nothing to do with diseases.” “We, homoeopathists, treat patients, not diseases.” Some of the self-styled pure homoeopathists feel that anyone who uses the word disease should have his mouth washed with soap and water as my mother did mine when I used some naughty word.
Fine, fine, but again the patients of homoeopathists sometimes die, and in most states the physicians are obliged to write in the certificate the disease which caused death. In my last book I cite a case (3) of one of these extremists, who was willing not only to hear but use the word conditions, but disease never, no never.
I have often written (4) and more often stated that for me a diagnosis is an absolute necessity in the selection of the indicated homoeopathic remedy. Why? 1st. Because when you make a diagnosis you consciously or unconsciously, correctly or incorrectly, form a conclusion as to what tissue or organ is affected. 2nd. You concluded how that tissue or organ is affected, whether irritated, inflamed, functionally or structurally changed. 3rd. You know that it has been demonstrated that some drugs can only irritate, can neither inflame nor cause structural changes like atrophy or hypertrophy, etc. Therefore, it would be not only futile but unreasonable to select a drug or remedy for an ulcer or a cataract which can only cause irritation. 4th. Diagnosis is very important in helping select the potency and in determining the repetition of the dose. (5) How? Why? Let me cite three cases not only answering the questions but touching the subject of prognosis. (4) All three cases had a similar, yes, a common entrance complaint, viz, “blurring of vision.”.
CASE 1. Miss B., age 29, school teacher: dark complexion; of neuro-bilious temperament; father died when she was three years old of pyaemia resulting from an operation for gallstones, from which he had suffered for many years. Mother living, but suffers from neurasthenia and occasional attacks of hysteria.
Patient, suffered from chorea at the age of puberty, 14, and has also suffered from dysmenorrhoea ever since. She is usually constipated. On her first call at my office her first sentence was, “Doctor, I want something to stop my blurring of vision”. Being requested to be more explicit she continued, “It comes every Friday night after my weeks work is done and I relax from my nervous tension. I have a dull headache then, blurring of vision, a mist before the eyes, then nausea; these symptoms grow worse so that I cannot sleep Friday night from the headache. Usually I vomit on Saturday morning, after which the headache, blurring of vision and nausea gradually get better but I am completely prostrated all day Saturday. I can sleep Saturday and Sunday night and am able to go back to may work Monday morning”. She continued, “This evening the eyes are worse than ever and I want to go to a picnic tomorrow, the worst way, so I came for something. Cant I get it?.
She was given four doses, five drops each, of Iris ver. to be taken in an ounce of water every hour for four doses. She was to go without her dinner: to take a laxative dose of Magnesia phos. in a half pint of water, and go to bed. The next day she went to the picnic and reported a fairly good time. The following Monday she was given Iris 30th, five drops in water, before breakfast, for three days. This cured after six weeks.
CASE II. Mr. G.H.K., aged 35, lawyer; light complexion; heavy, thick set, of sluggish temperament; family history nil; personal history, subject to catarrh of head and stomach whenever he takes cold, which he does easily. He came into my office with: “Doctor, give me something for my blurring vision. I have a very importance case to argue in the morning and unless you can check this attack. Ill be unable to appear.” He added. “This is the forerunner of a terrible sick headache to which I am subject.” When asked to give particulars he said, “The attack always begins with a blurring of vision, almost blinding me, then come hard sticking pains in my head over my eyes. As the headache grows worse the sight improves but nausea and vomiting set in. I vomit and cough, cough and vomit so that I cant talk. More than that I am terribly weak both mentally and physically from twenty-four to forty-eight hours”.
He was given five tablets of Kali bich. 3x, in a dram of water, every hour for five hours. He was also told to dissolve ten grains of Kali bich. 1x, in a teacup of water and douche his nostrils, throat, and mouth with it on reaching home and the first thing in the morning. He was also given tablets of the 30th of Kali bich, to be taken every morning. The results was satisfactory. He had only one attack beginning with the blurring, after that.
CASE III. Let us omit the family history, etc., in this case. A watch maker came to me and made the following entrance complaint: “Doctor, my vision is getting poor, I have a sort of mist before my eyes and Im afraid Im going blind.” Examination showed that cataracts were developing in both eyes. He was put upon Causticum 6x, ten drops, in a dram of water, to be taken internally night and morning and at the same time to have two drops of Cineraria put into both eyes. He was asked to report in six weeks. The report was, “I can see a little better, at least I am sure I am no worse.” The treatment was continued. The second report made three months later was “I can see much better.” Treatment was discontinued for three months, then resumed for two weeks, and then discontinued so long as there was improvement. His eyesight was saved.
Here are three different patients of three different make-ups and temperaments with the same entrance complaints but with three different diseases, affecting four different tissues or organs, viz., nerves, liver, mucous membrane, and eyes, given three different remedies in four different potencies, repeated at different intervals; with the same results, viz., amelioration of the sufferings of the three patients.
In all three cases diagnosis played a very important part in the selection of the indicated remedy. Not only that, but the diagnosis also enabled the giving of a prognosis which was also important. How? Why? Because a correct prognosis often gives your patient confidence in you. Again, and illustration. Case III had been to a recent graduate of a homoeopathic college, who, after hearing his symptoms, put up a vial of disks (presumably Causticum) handed it to the patient with the instruction to take five every three hours; and with the statement “You will be all right in a couple of days.