The International Hahnemann Association is fifty years old and this year begins its second half century. What has our society accomplished in its first fifty years? What may we hope and plan for in the fifty years to come?.
Without undue pride, we can certainly say that the Association has counted among its members most of these men and women in his country who have sought to practice Homoeopathy according to the teachings of Hahnemann; that it has encouraged thinking and writing upon Homoeopathy and related subjects, and that its transitions contain a wealth of teaching along these lines.
In bringing together those of like faith, those whose minds were wet on the attainment and practiced of the truth, the association has helped to form and to maintain many delightful friendships among its members. the meeting have been looked forward to almost as family gatherings and the papers and discussions have been followed with the closest.
The first meeting I had the pleasure of attending was that held in Rochester, N.Y. in 1904 when Dr.Boger was president. I remember that the person in charge of our meeting-room was much impressed because the members stayed through the sessions instead of wandering out to talk and smoke as people usual did at such meeting.
It was so very pleasant to have the meeting small and the discussions intimate that the members were sometimes tempted to discourage the growth of he society. Fortunately, however,there was a real missionary spirit in the majority and some of our most valued members today are among those instructed or even converted by the older brethren in the faith. the importance of this personal touch can hardly be over-estimated.
Of late years,through the zeal of some of our members,there has been established the Foundation for Homoeopathic Research and also the American Foundation for homoeopathy, with its conferences,clinics and, most important of all, its Post-Graduate School-all of which are very valuable means for extending the knowledge and influence of Homoeopathy.
With the taking over of The Recorder our Association has provided itself with an organ which carries its message not only to members in this country, but to many other countries, and to people who do not belong to the society.
To me it is particularly thrilling that at least two physicians who are working in Africa to spread the Gospel of the Kingdom of Christ are al;sop spreading the good news of the true art of healing, and, that through the medium of The Recorder, they may tell us of their struggles and success success and receive instruction and help.
One of he many valuable things that our society has done is the publishing of a directory of our ,embers and of other dependable Homoeopaths so that we shall know to whom we may direct our patients when they are away from home,. a precaution that we should never neglect. We should so instruct our patients that we should never neglect. We should so instruct our patients that they will know the difference between ]the real thing and the false so that they will incest upon the try as a matte of course. The creation of a demand is the first step toward furnishing a supply, and when the demand for real Homoeopaths is threat enough, the supply will be forthcoming.
This directory of ours we should be able to use with confidence. A p[hastens full membership on the international Hahnemannian Association should insure the opticians receiving careful, intelligent attention and the single, indicated, remedy.
We hire that the future of our society will show marked growth, not in number alone but in quality as well, There may be many physicians who wish to join our society, who really desire to practice good Homoeopathy,but who have not been sufficiently trained in Homoeopathic philosophy and the art of prescribing.
These should be welcomed as associate members for a period of time. They should be helped to again the requisite knowledge through instruction,reading and practice. Especially should they be encouraged when possible, to attend the Post-Graduate School. Above all they should be made to feel that the older members of the Association are sympathetic and encouraging in their attitude toward them. Our society is not what one of my friends laughingly called it, “the straightest sect of the Pharisees”. It is a body of physicians with their faces set toward the goal of truth. Like St.Paul, “we count not ourselves to have attained,but we press forward”.
May it be said of this society as of the early church that “there were daily added to it those who were being saved”,for the correct practice of the art of healing is necessarily a matter of growth. And since the practice of healing is an art,let us hope for the future of our society that state which is always most favorable to the cultivation of an art-the state of peace. We have already used the illustration of the early church. May I again quote from the book of acts of the soul-and they continued steadfastly-in the doctrine and fellowship”.
The Recorder is doing its readers excellent service in giving them the Index to Current Homoeopathic Literature,and in republishing valuable papers of our ulcer Homoeopathic writers. Many of these ulcer paper are models of clear thought and good diction and we of today would do well to patter after them. Putting thoughts into wards helps immensely to clarify mental processes. thus, the writing papers, whether records of cases or expositions of Homoeopathic philosophy, will help us as well as our readers of cases or expositions of Homoeopathic philosophy, will help us as well as our readers-and virtue will be its own reward!.
As our knowledge of the power of homoeopathy grows, through our practice of it, it is-and will continue to the more and more interesting to match it with the physiological and pathological discoveries of our medical brethren. For instance,and study of the dactyls glands is a fascinating one, constantly owning up new fields for investigation and experiment.
Let us be able to recognize the symptoms caused by or accompanying their faulty action,but then let us still remember what the condition of he glands is the effect,not the cause of the general disability of the sick person, and that help is to be found., not ion surgery, not in feeding the patient more glandular substance,but in the indicated Homoeopathic remedy, which will reduce the whole economy to order.
It is interesting to know, and most desirable that we should know,the symptoms produced by, or accompanying , to low or too high blood-pressure. Taking the blood pressure is an aid to diagnosis, as is taking the temperature,and should be part of the routine of a general be, but we should remember that it is only one symptom in the totality and that the prescription which fits the whole condition will remedy the abnormal blood pressure.
We could go on definitely giving illustrations of this sort, but the point is simply this, that we should give our interest and respect to those who are working over scientific problems, that we should weigh their discoveries with care and give them the place they deserve.
In thinking of the future of our society and what it is going to accomplish, my mind turns especially to the alleviation of mental suffering, not necessary insanity,but the fears obsessions and inhibitions which are so common among our patients.
Anyone who haws experienced it, knows that mental suffering is far harder to endure than physical pain,and if we are general practitioners we should be as well equipped to realize one as the other. Two books which I have read lately are exceedingly valuable in helping the physician to solve the mental problems of his patients. Open of these is fear by Dr.John Rathbone Oliver, a clergy men as well as a physicians who very evidently writes out of the fulness of his own experience in detailing the suffering of an over-worked business man who has become obsessed by the fear of death. the working out of the case from different angles, physical mental and spiritual is most instructive, as is the treatment used, and the outcome, in the restoration of he patient to health and happiness.
The second book is the Hope of the Variant by Dr. John George Gehring of Bethel, Maine. For thirty years he has had a sanitarium for patients suffering from nervous troubles or other chronic ailments, and has made them forever grateful for the relief given.
This book is especially directed toward helping the general practitioner. It deals with the physical and mental sufferings of the patients. their inner-relation and cause Dr. Gehring shows what we all know, that many inhalations or obsessions have their origin in some unfortunate childhood impression or habit which was gained control one the patient, but which may be eradicated by the aid of psychological re-education.
He stresses the need of sympathy and understanding between patient and physician and the importance of allowing the patient to unborn his mind by talking as long as he wishes in detailing his sufferings. He urges the use of medicine for the relief of such physical conditions as attend, or are responsible for, the mental suffering, especially in the case of digestive difficulties which he feels are very often at the foundation of the whole trouble.
Who has not seen it,I have felt that a well-trained homoeopath ought, of all people, to be best fitted to cope with cases of this ought, of all taught to see the patient as a whole, to investigate every detail of his sufferings and to note the influence upon him of his environment and his activities. the first interviews which we hotel with our patients often partake much of the character of the confessional and give almost as great relief. Putting vague fears and indefinite discomforts into words helps the patient of understand himself and the explanations of the physician increase this understanding.
Again our teaching leads us to consider m,mental symptoms of the highest importance in studying our cases we strive to use diligence and tact in bringing to light such symptoms and getting at there cause,and we use all our ingenuity to find means for relieving them.
And lastly,we have what no other physician can have, our well proven Homoeopathic remedies which for the whole patient including his mental condition. We have reason to be very thankful for the invaluable aid of the well developed section on the mind which we find in our rewriters,especially that of Dr.Kent.
For years our society and among its miners one who gave himself especially it t the care of nervous cases in an environment, which was in many ways ideal fore their relief. It was a great comfort to be able to put under the care of a man like Dr.Patch any patient who needed help not available in his usual surroundings.
Dr.Patch has gone from us. Is there not someone who could take us and carry on his work-or the glory of homoeopathy and the good of humanity?.