Vitality is measured by the ease with which living things adapt themselves to the vicissitudes and circumstances of life. Failure to do so spells discomfort, sickness, settled disease or even death. It is an inherent power, capable of being slowly augmented but can, on the other hand, be rapidly dissipated. It is strongly coherent, yet is very mobile and easily disturbed; acting somewhat like an electrified heavy gas.
Its vibrations are very sensitive to contracting matter, and even respond to the power of thought, being, as Hahnemann intimated, of an ethereal, or superphysical nature; a very indefinite term to be sure, but seeing that our ultra materialists have as yet not shown just how even crude substance is really activated in the living body, we ourselves need not feel greatly embarrassed.
Reactions of this vital power may take on any degree of intensity, but viewed from all angles it is soon apparent that it is violent in an inverse ratio to the benefit derived. Older homoeopaths realize this very well when they said “Die milde Macht ist Gross”! which we now know as a fully proven theorem.
Commonly, reactions occur between things occupying kindred states or planes; when these are overstepped more violent effects appear. A little reflection will soon convince you of this, as well as carry the implication that an irregularly acting vital force can be best stabilized on its own plane of action; all of which leads inferentially into the field of potency activity.
That potentised substances interact with the vital force may no longer be disputed; but to exhibit their highest possibilities requires a full understanding of all of the factors involved, as well as clear reasoning, before we can take full advantage of this mutual interaction. The older method of depending entirely upon memory severely handicapped the prescriber, leading almost involuntarily into empiricism and crude drugging methods.
The use of the repertory, first by Hahnemann himself, has been a great help; but with a continuously growing symptomatology even it has become too time-consuming. Coadaptation of widely separated rubrics was a troublesome business until the advent of one of the perforated card systems. These also afford a new and singularly efficient means for comparative study by the use of translucent cards of several tints. However, using the repertory only points toward some group of remedies from which the final choice must be made by careful comparison with the pathogenetic text.
In the recent past there has been too much running after individual symptoms to the neglect of the general trend or aspect of each case, to do really good work. Each symptom has its true place, but it is only as a component of a generally outlined picture. All of its parts go to make up the general and harmonious whole.
It is a mistake to get a reaction from but one or two organs; it savors too much of stimulation, as we see it in crude prescribing, and always leaves undesirable after effects. When the whole symptom phase is covered by a corresponding remedy a general reaction occurs, leaving only such remnants of the former state as may have some more permanent connection behind. A repetition of the once successful remedy, but in a different, often lower potency, usually sweeps these aside also and the next vital storm may be awaited before considering a different remedy.
The last vestige of chronic diseases can not be removed without attacking the fundamental miasms which are deeply rooted within the human economy, all of which leads us into quite another field of endeavor.
The length of a given reaction bears a close relation to its permanency. Slow and gentle improvement indicating final recovery, while a violent storm is soon over and does not accomplish much actual good. The earliest signs of genuine betterment are shown in a more cheerful frame of mind, the rest following in the reverse order to their appearance, although this recession may seem almost imperceptible.
Non-homoeopathic reaction is necessarily of a more or less violent nature and may even do vital damage. It often throws the symptom imagine into great disorder, over activating non- essentials, suppressing others, etc., etc.