THE LAW OF SIMILARS IN ANALYTICAL PSYCHOLOGY


THE LAW OF SIMILARS IN ANALYTICAL PSYCHOLOGY. By offering the psychological remedy in the reflection of the inner difficulty by an image taken from outer nurture, actually an inner disorder is matched without corresponding similar outer counterpart. On the psychological level the similimum as a corrective force-principle is presented. A homoeopathic approach is found to be the language of creative nature, within as well as outside of us.


(AUTHORS NOTE: It is with great misgiving that I offer this paper which really the introduction tot he paper on Phosphorus that is to be presented the Bureau of Materia Medica. Briefly, this is how it came to be:I started to collect material for this Phosphorus paper, trying to follow the same line that was followed with the former ones (Lycopodium and Natrum mur), and was rather taken aback by what came out,so much taken aback that for the Phosphorus paper, indeed, I felt an explanation was needed of the method used. This method, I believe, is somewhat new; if it proves accurate and acceptable, it may open up entirely new avenues for the understanding of mental and material physical effects.

I want to clarify one other point. When I speak of :analytical psychology.” I do not mean psychoanalysis of the Freudian School.. Relatively less well know, another school of psychology has come into being during the last ten or ears,that of Jung in Switzerland. As I understand,he was first a teacher psychiatry in Zurich,and was ousted from the position because of the revolutionary aspect of his methods. Her was reinstated and is very highly respected. His work is accepted now.

The outlook he gives is truly startling, particularly when brought into relation with our homoeopathic experience).

In correct prescribing,the system totality, as we call it,of the patient must be matched against the symptom totality of the medicine. This totality should not be a multitude of irrelevant details but a certain basic pattern, significant of the total functional unit. Two or three symptoms may already represent a totality, if they are truly characteristic of the outstanding pattern of the drug pathogenesis.

This empirical observation points to the fact that in the multitude of observable details certain expressions, notably the mental and general symptoms, are outstandingly representative of the wholeness of a disturbed organism; they subordinate logically,almost automatically, the “particulars”, namely symptoms and changes referrable only to certain parts and organs. Attempts have been made since the beginning of Materia Medica study to arrange and classify the multitude of symptoms in accordance with the patterns suggested by these guiding symptoms.

However, we have to admit that our Materia Medica confronts us with a maze of recorded observations which still seems to defy and attempt towards such a logical arrangement.

The resulting difficulty is a double one. {practically, it renders the study of Materia Medica more difficult by requiring a great e dependence on merc memorizing theoretically, it leaves us at a loss for a rational explanation for the sometimes rather strange hodgepodge of clinical indications, peculiar general and mental symptoms and modalities in one and the same remedy.

Since the mental symptoms are of determining and overruling importance in establishing the pattern of the totality,t he conclusion is justified that they must also be a basic factor in its formation. As yet,though, we are unable to indicate why certain mental characteristics are associated with certain physical disorders. We are also at a loss to understand why certain substances again are related to certain mental characteristics, such as salt to seclusiveness Phosphor to sociability, Gold to depression and Sulfur to cheerfulness to mention a few examples.

What avenues can we find leading toward a solution of these problems?.

The homoeopathic approach is a phenomenological one. Hahnemann developed his theory not on the basis of speculation but as the result of pure observation. An analogy was observed between the symptoms caused by a drug upon a prover and the similar symptoms of spontaneous illness. Such an analogy was found to be not merc chance but the expression of a basic functional interrelation between drug pathogenesis and illness.

From this fact the conclusion offers itself that in general an analogy of similar appearance may express a basic relationship since a common factor must be the cause of the similar features, provided that this analogy covers a real totality and is not accepted on the basis of merc superficial resemblance.

The law of similars is the law of the basis relationship of analogous phenomena.

In our attempt at finding a logical correlation between a drug and its mental, general and particular symptoms we are justified,therefore, in looking for analogous phenomena. It is in analytical psychology that a similar phenomenon,that of matching outer phenomena with inner mental happenings, comes to out attention.

Edward C. Whitmont
Edward Whitmont graduated from the Vienna University Medical School in 1936 and had early training in Adlerian psychology. He studied Rudulf Steiner's work with Karl Konig, later founder of the Camphill Movement. He researched naturopathy, nutrition, yoga and astrology. Whitmont studied Homeopathy with Elizabeth Wright Hubbard. His interest in Analytical Psychology led to his meeting with Carl G. Jung and training in Jungian therapy. He was in private practice of Analytical Psychology in New York and taught at the C. G. Jung Training Center, of which he is was a founding member and chairman. E. C. Whitmont died in September, 1998.