In the course of our friendship with our remedies, as with our acquaintances, we learn their qualities and who can be depended on for charm, for fun, and to do the work of the world. I would like to introduce to you anew, today, the coterie of intellectual remedies.
It would be difficult to select from any thousand people the couple of dozen noted for their qualities of mind, so I must beg your clemency for the fragmentary group that I would present to you today. They were selected, not with an eye to numbers, but from two viewpoints, first the practical clinical one, on the basis of patients showing unusual mental ability whose symptomatology had called for these remedies, and secondly from a theoretical standpoint by running through the mental pathogenesis of our frequently used remedies. By mere haphazard I found 25 remedies which I should pout preeminently in this class and I want to give you just a high light on their mental processes.
We seem fated to always begin with Aconite, like Genesis, it is the beginning, and like the nature of the remedy what can be said of its intellect is strong and swift: Brainy people, full of power and vigor, with a plethora of ideas, sudden in decision, swift and accurate in carrying out, hypersensitive: yes, but in a robust way, capable of ecstasy and even of clairvoyance, but not in an effete form, subject to fears and anguish, strong as their natures, and, strangely enough, with a dash of malice which in them is a spice rather than a habit.
Argentum nitricum is next. This may surprise you for we associate silver with failure of the intellect but in this remedy there is an intellect to fail. This is the prototype of public performers, lecturers, flatulent mentally as well as physically, folk full of drive, hurried by the pressure of work and public contacts. They become apprehensive, fidgety, full of fear and anxiety, and, as they urge themselves to more and more effort to compensate for their failing confidence, strange conduct crops out and they are nimble at devising queer reasons and excuses for their erratic mental processes, to use modern parlance, they rationalize par excellence.
Belladonna, so well known to us, has been intellectual from its childhood, these vigorous, plump, large headed boys with a high I. Q. Here again the force shows itself in sudden violent complaints, the mind is so active and fertile that the irritation of illness drives it quickly into the realm of delirium and violence. Unexpected acts crop up which in normalcy are piquant and refreshing and in mania may appear as biting, physical violence, boisterousness and destructiveness.
Next we come to one of the very few remedies who carry on the worlds work in this country and make America what it is. We are speaking, of course, of our business man, Bryonia. Rich and competent though he is, he fears poverty, he may be slow on the uptake but how persistent, he can follow through with large projects, his obstinacy is an aid, his choleric disposition an added strength. The Bryonias are not negative, they are a bursting people which their pains symbolize. They are better under pressure, in mind as in body. They are a mighty folk and can produce real end results in the world.
Many of you will disagree with me about our next type, Calc. phos. To be sure, he is a slow starter, but he makes up for it. He begins with the trifling weakness of Calcarea but he develops some of the brilliance of Phosphorus and in the end he approaches the mental range of Tuberculinum.
Intellectually and insanity are relatives. Consider the beautific state of Cannabis indica, its grandiose ideas, its wonderful theories, the thrilling prolificness of its mind, its enthusiasm, to a point of exaltation and clairvoyance.
Coffea, as we can almost all demonstrate, is a great worker. Its power to think and to debate are heightened, it has a supersanity, its memory is phenomenal, it will quote you appositely from the poetry of any period. It labors incessantly for some great cause and then breaks down with insomnia thinking of a thousand things in bed. Hypersensitive to noise, to joy, to the pain of its neuralgias.
You may not think of Fluoric acid as intellectual, for in a way it is the gigolo of remedies, the male Sepia. But consider it in the trilogy of Silica, Pulsatilla, Fluoric acid. It is business, mad, hungry for thought as well as for emotion, with a curious mildness like Pulsatilla, and a reticence commendable in one so emotional.
On Ignatia we need barely touch. You will know its over educated refinement, too much cherished in mind and body, fed on Chopin instead of porridge but capable in its changeable way of great things in the arts.
Consider the mental veracity of Iodine, the typical thyroid, zealous, restless, often literary, feeling that if it stopped its active brain it would go mad, at the same time over careful, exigent, impulsive, a great driver of itself even more than of others.
Kali carb. has a more complicated and intriguing mentality, witty, whimsical, sensitive to changes of mental atmosphere also, a ticklish proposition in spirit as in body, impossible on committees because of its touchiness, trying in the family, quarreling with its bread and butter but ingenious, and vastly capable.
Its relative Kali phos. whom we usually meet in nervous prostration before prolonged sorrow drove it into indifference and sadness, was an interesting type, its competence shot with unexpected cruelty, contrariness, and passions.
You have all suffered from the uplifters, the compensatory social workers who need Lachesis. Like Josephus in the Goop book,they never finish anything, but what they do begin! Brilliant in comprehension, always a lap ahead, their loquaciousness a form of alleviating discharge, self conscious, conceited, jealous of prominence, what promotors they are. A brilliant group who must fight to the end succumbing to their own temperaments.
What would the profession of the law or indeed the teaching ranks do without Lycopodium? Here the mind from the word go has been developed at the expense of the body, incompetence, dread of new or even of familiar roles, infinite procrastination coming from this sphere, indecision, misanthropy, the imperiousness of weakness, the personification of the inferiority complex, or as one of my patients put it of mental impotence.
Nitric acid, with its deep lines of suffering, its sensitiveness, its vindictiveness and taciturnity, shows you its mental calibre less than the others but it is there beneath the obstinacy, beneath the physical sufferings, a vivid brain.
Natrum phos. has the solidity of Natrum mur. with some of the scope of Phosphorus, abundant ideas but easily distractible, hurried, angry at trifles, discouraged, fretful.
Phosphorus, at its best, has perhaps more brains than any remedy. It is over active, vehement and suffers from its own vehemence, excessive throughout, with a disorderly strength, it has the element of immodesty, a sort of mental exhibitionism which makes all its traits both good and bad show up to their full value. It also has ecstasies and clairvoyance although these are of a more tenuous and Celtic type than those of Aconite.
Train and restrain Phosphorus and it will go to any heights.
Another of the builders of our modern civilization is Nux vomica, the certified public accountant, charged with detail of which he is perfect master but which irritate him into fault finding, vehemence and even spite. He must have an outlet from his sedentary and exacting occupation, he cannot bear reading or conversation, he takes to dissipation or lets out in spells of touchiness, he will kick the chair and rip off the button from irritable weakness, he has too many irons in the fire and they are always hot, he is hurried by a thousand details until he is tortured and takes it out on the family. His mental peristalsis is reversed, he is full of perversity, he strains not only to vomit, to stools and to urination but to forcing things his own way. He suffers and makes all about him suffer form mental tenesmus.
Staphisagria we think of in other spheres but he is one of the cultivated gentlemen of the earth, controlling himself at any price, brooding over his chagrin, soured by his pent up wrath, to the point where he has to let the bank handle his business because repression has fatigued him until he can no longer cope with it.
Of the exasperating prowess of Sulphur we need hardly speak, the scholar, the book worm, the inventor, the great unwashed, ill shaven, thread bare, with spotty vest, with smooched collar, his room full of papers and books, his closet full of boxes, his mind full of metaphysics. The first time you meet him he is a genius, the next time a nuisance, and subsequently a pest.
Silica with its neat, clean, orderly mind, with its firm yet delicate perceptions, has a mental fibre of which we need more, if only he had the confidence and the personality to impose his thought on the community.
Tuberculinum, the traveler, the great cosmopolite, ever in search of new people, new excitement, new ideas, the faddist, the consumer of cults.
Veratrum, the dowager, unkindly witty, loquacious, malicious, working destruction with rapier ability in the Womans Club of which she is the president.
One little known to you, perhaps, Viola odorata, thin, fair, mild, impressive looking, with a marked increase of mental activity, over intellectual and suppressed in emotions with her aversion to music especially the violin.
And lastly, another of the brains of the outfit, Zincum who vies with Nux. for hard work, docile yet irascible, the keynotes to whose nature are oversensitivity, and the inability to throw things off either mentally or physically. The eruptions in the spirit of Zincum as well as in the skin cannot be thrown off and its natural fidgetiness and activity are turned into a slow and desperate prostration.
Here you have them, some of them, the group whom is pays to cure, and who, when they have received their remedies, are capable of doing enormous constructive work in any field as well as for homoeopathy.
NEW YORK, N.Y.
DR. A. H. GRIMMER: I dont know how we can discuss this wonderful paper. It is perfect. It is a wonderful, brief, concise, clear-cut picture of the mental phases of our remedies, which we see almost every day in our practice. yet Dr. Hubbard has brought that mental phase out so clearly and beautifully there is nothing to discuss. All we can do is just admire and thank her for it.
DR. C. B. STEARNS: It is very interesting to follow these remedies in the classification that I have mentioned before. You probably will have it in your wastebaskets or in your books somewhere.
Iodotannin, Phos. acid, Phos., Silica, Lycopodium, and Belladonna are all in group V. They all go together. They apply to the same kind of people. Coffea, Iodine, the Kalis, Sulphur, and Zinc are in group VIII. The others are scattered around.
DR. G. ROYAL: I have enjoyed this paper very much. I realize however that it is impossible for any of us to get the complete, rounded-out characteristics of our best friends. So I want to add a little bit to her Kali phos. for two reasons: first, because I proved it upon myself thoroughly in different potencies; secondly, because I have used it a great deal and I know it is one of the best of our mental friends in the materia medica.
There is an expression that rules all through the remedy covered by the word “tired”. You will find it in many of the books under the expression “brain fag”. It applies to the brain especially. It doesnt make much difference what the cause is, the makeup, as far as the neurotic individual is concerned, is excellent. But how or what produces the tired feeling or the brain fag is of a great deal of importance. For instance, it has been a busy day and a large number of patients have come in, old patients one or two new ones, with a lot of peculiar symptoms.
You have had to think and think hard. There isnt much irritation in this but there is hard thinking. Then again, you attend a meeting. You get into a discussion. Parliamentary rulings, bylaws and constitutions have to be set aside. The mind becomes just as tired from activity of this kind ad it does from the other. And in addition to that tired feeling we become irritated and almost disgusted. Kali phos. comes in well in such a condition, and I wanted to add that to the characteristics you have heard in this paper.
If you will permit me, I may be off the question a little bit, but I want to compare the word “tired” under Kali phos. and Echinacea. “Tired” is the word in both remedies which should to emphasized, tried in the different organs of the body. Echinacea doesnt make your head tried or your brain tried. I have proved them both. I have used them both. Echinacea makes you tried physically, muscular tiredness; Kali phos. makes you mentally tired. There is difference between the two.
I should like to ask Dr. Hubbard, when she put Zincum down here, what Zinc she means, what preparation, what compound?.
DR. E. HUBBARD: Zincum met., plain Zincum.
DR. G. ROYAL: The important three Zincums are the metal, the Phosphide and the Valerianate.
The doctor spoke about the fidgety condition under Zinc. She is correct, if she will include it in all three of them, because it is very marked under Zinc val.
Now we will take Zinc. phos. That is the Zinc. There is where you go down, way down in deep. If you remember I gave you, I have forgotten in which of my books, I think it is in my Practice, a case that was led into my clinic, and put down in the chair, a man about forty-six years old. His wife had to sit him down. He had as blank an expression as you ever saw. I called out one of the students and told him to go at him. His history had been good. He was a farmer. The family history was good.
The personal history was good until he had an encounter with a mad animal that gored him fearfully and he lost an immense amount of blood. A short time after that he began to have what she called spasms. The family physician was an old school physician. He came in and foolishly made a diagnosis, a very incorrect one of epilepsy. He didnt take into consideration all the four symptoms. Then, having made his diagnosis he put him on heavy doses of bromide of potash.
When I saw him at the clinic he didnt know what his name was. He could hardly walk. He was led along. The examination proved that he was impotent, gone, as you might say.
There was the case. We gave him the 3x of Zinc. phos. four times a day. For auxiliary treatment we put him on a meat free liquid diet.
It took a good deal of time to build up that man so that his blood was what is should be, and to overcome the effect of that foolish prescription of bromides. Gradually he got better but it took a year before he could get out and do the business of a large farm.
Again and again I have gotten conditions where there is deterioration of the nerve, especially of the optic nerve.
There is where your Zinc. phos. comes in.
PRESIDENT G. STEVENS: When Dr. Hubbard was speaking of Lycopodium it made me think of a