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Homeopathy and Hahnemann

Dr. M. A. USMANI

When we say ‘homeopathy’, Hahnemann comes to the mind; and when we think of Hahnemann, homeopathy come to the forefront of our consciousness: their connotation merge into a single whole. Homeopathy can never be thought of without Hahnemann. But homeopathy is a science - a scientific therapeutics. So it can be thought of without any personality cult. A science to be science should be logical: based squarely on logic, not on the authority of any person.

Homeopathy became a science of therapeutic by creating a logical relation between two phenomena: the phenomenon of the patient, and the phenomenon of a medicine, through the law of cure. The law of cure is based on finding the exact similarity between the two phenomena: the sickness of the patient, with all his genuine symptoms, and the faithful record of sickening created in a healthy person by ingesting a drug, for which we use the term ‘proving’. As all life sciences, (sciences of the living organisms) are prone to errors and infestation by humanistic imagery or biases or subjective thinking, they require a permanent logico-scientific check.

Hahnemann wrote a book: Organon of Medicine, consisting of the fundamental tenets for curing diseases by homeopathy. It went into 6 editions, and would have gone into as many more had he lived some 20 more years or so. The purpose of this book was to teach how to practice homeopathy. The sequence of editions, with small and big - minor or major - alterations, bore the fact, that changes were inevitable as the face of the science was brightening up with time and experience. The other and mighty factor although was the fact that the larger scenario of the medical sciences had undergone radical changes with new discoveries and advancements in theory and technology that had metamorphosed it beyond recognition. Hundred years down the history, after the death of Hahnemann, allopathy no more remained what it was at that time. The name and the title of ‘medical science’, with its full connotation, was fully appropriated by the allopathy of yore. And all other systems became different ‘ways of treatment’ - hence the title of ‘Alternative medicine’; which means that the so-called alternative systems have became various ‘therapeutics of sorts’, while allopathy attained the status of the main science of medicine, and all other alternative treatments mere tributaries. A part can’t vie with the whole.

So, homeopathy is the tributary supplied by Hahnemann: an important and the most popular therapeutics that stands second to none in hierarchy and popularity but allopathy. But, to become supple-footed, homeopathy has to shed or undo many impedimenta. The most hindering and disabling being the Organon, three-fourth of which has lost its relevance with the modern science of medicine. I’m contented and complacent that 20% at most of all the practicing principled and faithful homeopaths might have read the Organon and pondered on its all aphorisms. Basic principles and rules of practice are up their sleeves nonetheless.

All the honest and able homeopath do know that for real homeopathy, according to the Organon, every doctor should try to find for every case:

  1. A Single Remedy;
  2. Single Dose, or multiple doses in watery solution;
  3. to Cease repeating at once the sooner the patient started feeling well; and then
  4. never repeating the previous medicine, without retaking the case afresh;

    But these are all logical corollaries, not because of some pre-laid out rules. Moreover:

  5. There should not be any pre-set or pre-determined alternation of remedies. It is a purely practical matter, and should be determined according to the situation—not to any appeal to authority;
  6. Never mix medicines. If you should, you can only do it by strictly ‘proving’ your mixture according to strict homeopathic proving laws, and under the strict governmental drug rules.

The Organon of Medicine, by Hahnemann is no doubt a great book full of wisdom and golden practical rules. But it should not hamper the adjustment of its therapeutic to the modern medicine. It should not be made a scripture. Homeopathy must advance and be congruous to modern concepts and knowledge, and recast its vision accordingly.

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