For practical purposes, homoeopathic research work can be divided into two great groups :.
GROUP I. Research not requiring money.
GROUP II. Research requiting money.
I begin with Group I which is more readily attainable for obvious reason, and wish to subdivide this group into a two group:.
A. Clinical Research.
B. Theoretical Research.
I. HOMOEOPATHIC RESEARCH NOT REQUIRING MONEY.
A. CLINICAL RESEARCH.
First of all, homoeopathy is not a theoretical but clinical science, as it is set forth with monumental terseness in the first paragraph of the Organon : “The first and only duty of the physicians is to cure.” Therefore, provings done for this purpose alone, and clinical observations of drug effects at the bedside, will always constitute the fundamentals of research in homoeopathy.
1. Provings of Drugs.
Although the homoeopathic materia medica is richer than any other materia medica in existence, the introduction of new proved medicines will always be welcome and even necessary. We often have to struggle with pathological conditions which do not seem to fit any given drug picture altogether, and, therefore, demand a sequence of remedies, which sometimes still does not give completely satisfactory results. There are many powerful agents in the various kingdoms of nature which could furnish remedies capable of covering disorders such as those mentioned above.
Besides, it is safe to say that each era has not only its own characteristic mental, economical and cultural physiognomy, but also its own characteristic diseases. For this reason too, it may be necessary to discover new drugs, fitting the particular traits that disease take on in a certain era, or fitting even entirely new pathological condition. The polychrests will always be useful. Their usefulness is as unchangeable as human nature basically is. However, at the same time, there is within the frame of human nature a steady flow and change of conditions.
There are certain more recently discovered agents which are particularly inviting for homoeopathic provings, such as the great group of bacterial toxins, used as vaccines, and the group of vitamins. Apart from the provings of new remedies, a re- proving of the old, particularly of the minor remedies which have not as yet been proved as thoroughly as they certainly deserve, is highly recommendable. If possible, modern means of psychological observation and laboratory tests should be utilized to bring provings up to date.
Formation of smaller or larger mixed groups of provers, consisting of doctors and laymen, would make possible the accomplishment of this work. The various existing homoeopathic laymens organizations could be of the greatest service to the cause of homoeopathy by lending their assistance.
The setting up of a central council which, year after year, would choose the drugs so to be proved and would supervise the work to be done in the various provings units-each under the direction of a homoeopathic physician-would guarantee planned, organized work. The formation of similar councils in other countries, working under the same plan, and coordination of all these effects on a world-wide scale would certainly produce the greatest practical results.
2. Observation of Occupational Diseases in Mining Districts and in Factories.
Additional sources of knowledge of the effect of chemical and other poisons are the factories. Homoeopathic physicians living in mining districts and factories. Homoeopathic physicians living in the vicinity of mining districts, particularly if in charge of health supervision of workers, are in a position to collect valuable toxicological material which can be used, supplementing provings.
The systematic observation of toxic effects of drugs taken in crude form may furnish additional material or stimulate the undertaking of provings of these drugs.
3. Observation and Confirmation of New Clinical symptoms.
No new clinical symptoms of any importance have been added to a drug picture for a long time. These drug pictures have become a more or less fixed pattern in our minds, with no impetus toward enrichment by new clinical symptoms. There is no doubt that a closer observation of the constitutional set-up of our patients, their character traits and their physiological and pathological reactions would furnish new clinical symptoms, making the choice of a remedy easier for the future.
4. Critical Observation of the Effect of Different Potencies and of Different Ways of Administering the Remedy.
Another field of research, at the bedside, is the observation of the effect of the different potencies. Here also a fixed mental pattern has been created which is detrimental to research. For many prescriber, the teaching of Kent has become the binding principle in the field of prescribing, and no new experimental work has been done since Hahnemann himself set a great example for homoeopathic research, by doing experimental work according to the inductive method, not recognizing any authority except experience.
The potency question can be solved only by open-minded cooperation of highly critical observers, who do experimental work within the whole scale of potencies, beginning with the mother tincture up to the highest dynamizations. In the field of remedy administration, a rechecking of Hahnemanns observation concerning the effect of smelling the remedies should be made.
The sixth edition of the Organon describes another method of remedy administration, different from that method used by most prescriber, who follow the advice of the previous editions. This last method of Hahnemanns prescribing the regular daily use of a high potency, dissolved in water (see page 226 of the original edition of the Organon) should be checked. Only the cooperation of many unbiased, critical observers can establish a real law of dosage, based exclusively on experiments and not on theoretical speculation.
5. Setting up of a Critical Standard in Reporting Cases.
Homoeopathic literature consists basically of drug provings and case reports which confirm the drug provings and the Law of Similar. In drug provings, a very high standard of accurate observation and critical judgment is required. the same standard should be valid for the other part of homoeopathic literature, case reporting. Unfortunately, the latter does not always obtain. Thoroughly examined cases, treated according to the Law of Similars, are a very valuable contribution to homoeopathic research, particularly if rarely used or new remedies have been administered. Such cases should be thoroughly examined with all available definitely established, cases should not be published as a cure of this or that disease, as case reports of this sort are misleading. It would be better to give a complete description of all the symptoms of the case, instead of a diagnosis.
6. Certain of a Central Department of which Epidemic Remedies in case of influenza and Other Epidemics Can Be Reported.
The existence of such a central department would facilitate the task of combating epidemics, if the remedy found useful at the onset of the epidemic were reported quickly and made known to all doctors. In view of the fact that epidemics of various sorts are to be expected in the wake of the war, the organization of a central department for epidemic diseases would be highly useful. A duty of this department would be to study in advance remedies and remedy groups which might be useful in epidemic diseases, or which have been used successfully in epidemic diseases such as typhus, etc.
7. Preparation of Statistics.
The central department for epidemic diseases should get all the material from homoeopathic doctors in order to prepare statistics in epidemic and other diseases which would prove the value of homoeopathic treatment. Special forms should be issued to the doctors to facilitate this type of research work.
B. THEORETICAL RESEARCH.
8 (a) Rechecking of the old literature and following up of current literature concerning toxicology, in journals and archives, in order thus to complete old drug pictures, and to find new agents which appear particularly promising therapeutically, and should therefore be proved.
(b) Rechecking of old and following up of current pharmacological literature in order to obtain a deeper insight into the action of the drug.
(c). Research in the field of empirical use of drugs in popular medicine of peoples all over the world, in order to find material stimulating provings of new drugs.
9. Following up of modern literature in school medicine, biology biochemistry, which confirms the Law of Similars and the effect of the infinitesimal dose, which throws new light upon problems in homoeopathy.
10. Application of the New Methods and results of Modern Psychology, Endocrinology, and Constitutional Medicine in Homoeopathy.
Modern psychology, psychoanalysis, Rorschach test, graphology, would be made useful for the interpretation of the mental symptoms in our patients as well as in our drug pictures. The same applies to endocrinology and constitutional medicine which would explain many of our drug and personality types.
11. Application of Research in Meteorology, Climatology, Dietetics to Homoeopathy.
A great many of the homoeopathic modalities, very often the decisive ones in choosing drugs, concern weather changes or food studying the influences of weather and climate upon constitutions in connection with the study of remedies. Modern research in the field of food allergy could be applied to the food symptoms of our drug pictures.
12. Following up of the Literature in Geology, Mineralogy, Physical, Botany, Zoology, Physiology, to Corroborate and Integrate the Facts in Connection with Homoeopathy.
The formation of study groups, consisting of homoeopathic physicians and experts in the above mentioned field, would promote a broader approach to the problems of homoeopathy and lead to an integration of all facts of natural science in the light of a real homoeopathic philosophy.
II. HOMOEOPATHIC RESEARCH REQUIRING MONEY.
1. Experimental Work with Homoeopathic Drugs on Plants.
It is a distinguished feature of homoeopathy that it need not resort to cruel experiments of animals. Homoeopathy is, in every sense, a human method of cure. The basic reactions of life, ad such, towards potentized drugs can be studied also in plants. A practical application of this principle could be made by experimenting with potentized fertilizers. The effect of the nutritional minerals salts of the soil in potentized form upon the growth and development of plants should be studied and applied to practical use. The homoeopathic law of cure is a basic of life and it therefore should be applicable also in the treatment of plant diseases.
Publication of a book called Practical Experiences in Homoeopathy. The most valuable practical experiences of our best prescribers, the essence of a life-long practice, should be preserved for the benefit of future generations of homoeopathic physicians. It should be the duty of every homoeopathic practitioner of experience to review, in a critical way, his experiences in homoeopathy and to transmit them to other homoeopathic physicians. A collection of these contributions should be made and published once, or at suitable, intervals, if possible, like the allopathic series of the Year Book of Medicine.
3. Encouragement and Support of the Homoeopathic Research Done with the Boyd Emanometer by Boyd, in England, and by Stearns in this Country.
The Boyd Emanometer is a tuning device analogous to a radio circuit. Through its variable resonance characteristics it can be made to tune in separately the components of complex body and drug energies. As a detector a human subject is used in series with the Emanometer terminal electrode. The subject functions to record the presence of energies by an abdominal reflex which is specific for each type of energy. The reflex is elicited under manual percussion, when the normal abdominal note becomes dull due to the presence of an energy component. The dullness on the abdomen varies in location and shape according to the different components, but is fixed in these respects for any one components.
The source of energy in the circuit may be a drop of blood from the patient and also drugs, especially in potency and vaccines. It can be shown that changes in the distribution of intensities amongst the components of an individual always precede and accompany ill health. Therapeutically, the Emanometer is useful in selecting the drug which, when placed in circuit together with energy from the patient, restores the normal distribution of the latter. Clinical improvement or cure follows this normalization. The energies do not show the usual electromagnetic characteristic and their nature is at present unknown.
4. Pfeiffers work, applied to Homoeopathy.
Pfeiffer pours 10 cc. of a 5 percent-20 percent copper chloride solution on a smooth glass plate so that the surface is covered with a thin film of the liquid. The solution then is allowed to crystallize in an undisturbed room of even temperature (28). Crystallization takes place within 14-18 hours. The crystallization patterns is changed in a characteristic way by adding of plant extracts or solution of salts, metal salts, extract of animal or human fluids, such as saliva, urine, tissue extracts of diluted blood.
Each specimen produces its own characteristic configuration, different from the formation produced by any other species as well as from the control plates of pure copper chloride. Pfeiffer produced crystallization pictures with low and higher potencies, up to the 30th potency, of various remedies. The method should be tried with a view to produce a visualization of the effect of high potencies. Furthermore, it could be checked, whether the blood of a diseased person and the corresponding remedy with the greatest simile relationship produce similar crystallization patterns. Thus, a visualization and experimental confirmation of the simile principle could be obtained.
NEW YORK, N.Y.
The author would appreciate any suggestions and cooperation as to the program outlined above.
DR. GREEN : Dr. Gutman wrote me some time ago that he was going to present a paper before this body which would incorporate his ideas for homoeopathic research. He thought it might form a basis for the Bureau of Research in the American Foundation for Homoeopathy. Also, I understand Dr. Pfeiffer very far from Philadelphia. They are experimenting with soils and with the treatment of plants with fertilizers. I think he is trying to coordinate that Philadelphia. At any rate, something may come out of all this that will be I for one am very glad that something of this sort is on the way.
Incidentally, I think there is a good bit of homoeopathic philosophy in the work of the anthroposophists, although they have a medical department of their own and say that homoeopathy is elementary and that we have not gone anywhere near far enough.
DR. MOORE : I wonder if there is anything anywhere on the treatment of plants for plant diseases by homoeopathy. Does anyone know of anything ?.
DR. GREEN : I think this will develop into that.
DR. SUTHERLAND : I can answer that in part. Dr. Stearns has done a little work at the Spring Valley summer place of the Anthroposophical Society. They are using, I think, potentized Arsenicum on their potato plants. They method. I think, Dr. Stearns initiated that form of experimentation that was carried on under his direction by some of the people at the Spring Valley place. It was interesting and it really worked out.
I have forgotten just what the method was, but I think the seed potatoes were treated with the potentized remedy, and they had a control group of ordinary potatoes : and Arsenicum group potatoes came up and were free from bugs. The potato bugs just did not like it.
DR. MOORE : They have a number of different things that bother potatoes besides the bugs, fungi and one thing or another that must be taken care of.
DR. SUTHERLAND : I think they were dealing chiefly with the potato bugs. Of course, they are quite a curse. The standard form of insecticide for that is Paris green which contains arsenic. I think that particular substance gave them a lead as to what to do.
DR. GREEN : At the Spring Valley farm and at this one near Philadelphia, these people make their own fertilizers. They do not use any commercial fertilizers. Therefore, those things that they use are free from drugs and, on that basis, would give a clear field in which to give potentized homoeopathic remedies to plants and see what would happen.
DR. MOORE : I remember Dr. Hayes saying he had some homoeopathic remedy in cut flowers, with the result that they stood up very nicely and very much longer, but he repeated the experiment the next year and it did not work. It is a matter of technique.
DR. ARNOLD : This is very interesting. It reminds me of Dr. MacKenzie and his vaccines, highly potentized, just subjecting the potato, before it is planted, so that it is immunized against the insects.
When I was a boy on th farm, Paris green preparation of arsenic was the popular anti-potato-bug remedy.
There are great possibilities from the treatment of plant life as well as the human.
DR. KAPLOWE : New Haven offers quite an opportunity for the study of the effects of homoeopathic remedies on plant life, because we have an agriculture experiment station there, quite a big one. I think it is run not only by the university but by the government. I have called them up many times and asked them why it is that my Japanese beetles still continue to thrive and the grass dies, while I spend dozens of dollars for arsenate of lead in an attempt to kill the beetle. We have quite an epidemic of the Japanese beetle.
I began to think that I would like to try the effect of potentized remedies on the development of plant for the destruction of parasite life. If anyone here knows where I can obtain these potentized remedies in massive enough forms in order to try it on plant life, I might suggest that the experiment station try it.
DR. SUTHERLAND : You can obtain potentized remedies very easily. You have quite a lot of your own and you can make more if you need to. You dont need them in quantity. According to what Dr. Stearns told me with regard to the potato plant, the remedy was made in the form of a trituration, a powder, and was dusted on the seedling potatoes. You know how you cut up potatoes to plant them, cut the eyes out, use the eye portion used to plant is dusted with a camels hair brush, with a little of the potentized Arsenic sprinkled on. You dont need, massive quantities.
DR. KAPLOWE : I thought it was to be put into the soil.
DR. SUTHERLAND : We seem to be getting off her track a little. This paper should have been discussed as a whole, not devoting ourselves to a particular phase of it.
Probably the easiest way, though, to discuss a paper of this sorts is to pick out particular portions which seem to interest the assemblage and discuss those, but we are getting a little bit off the track.
However, I would like to say a work about a particular phase here, just to be inconsistent, and that is regarding the publication of a book, Practical Experiences in Homoeopathy. Such a book, of course, would be very interesting, but Dr. Gutman seems to have forgotten the fact since approximately 1796 there have been published, at very frequent intervals, many volumes dealing with practical experiences in homoeopathy. Any good homoeopathic library has just the sort of book that Dr. Gutman mentions.
I dont think the publication of a book specifically devoted to that purpose is necessary ; it is all there. If you want to take the time to look it up, you can always find it. There wont be anything further to add. Our experiences with homoeopathy is a basic science. It does not change. You cannot bring out anything new in that way.
If someone wants to take the trouble to write a book called Practical Experiences in Homoeopathy, let him go a head and do it. It dont think we have to pass a vote saying he can.
Dr. Roberts has recently published a book called The Principals and Art of Cure by Homoeopathy, which is based largely on practical experiences in that particular science. That book is available. There are many other books available. I dont think the school would gain anything particular by the publication of a new book.
DR. KAPLOWE : May I ask a question. Does anyone know much about the effect of vitamin B1 on plant life ?.
DR. BOGER-SHATTUCK : I have used quite a lot of it.
DR. PULFORD : The greatest piece of prescriptional research that has been made is drug proving, but the great trouble with the provers of the drugs is they have not been united.
No man on earth is capable and intelligent enough to prove a single remedy. That may seem strange but that is an absolute fact. Every drug produces on every human being the identical, same, basic primary group, and they are limited. It takes at least fifty or more provings in order to arrive at the symptoms that indicate the remedy in every case. I am not capable, Hahnemann was not capable.
The symptoms that appear in our materia medica, and Allens Encyclopedia, were never produced on a single individual or by a single drug. Every individual responds to that principle or drug picture in a different manner, but it does not change the indication for the drug. It is permanent. That is one thing that we have forgotten. Homoeopathy has given us the only improvement in medicine that has ever come before the public or been of any benefit to mankind.
DR. ARNOLD : In the provings of homoeopathic medicine, I wonder if the provers had taken into consideration habits ? Were they addicted to tobacco ? Were they addicted to liquor ? Did they have any infectious diseases, such as read and hear of, two or three in the same person, at the same time ? I think in making a proving of a medicine, the prover should be examined. He should demonstrate that he has a perfectly healthy body to start with, not using tobacco, liquor, drug of any kind, and he should demonstrate that he has a perfectly healthy body to start with, not using tea or coffee or any of those things that may change the character of the proving.