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Homeopathy Today Article - No Title

The myth
of individualization

Dear Editor,
Your editorial is usually the first item that
I read as it always has a theme worth thinking about.
     In the June issue, you said that homeopathy will
never be accepted by current conventional medicine because it has no way of "lumping
people together and giving 'remedy x' for 'condition y.'" The last part of this
statement is correct, but the first part is false. What we have here is the myth
of individualization in homeopathy—a myth that once led a writer in your
journal to say, in all seriousness, that since we have 6 billion people on earth
we ideally need 6 billion remedies. Belief in that same myth allows experienced
homeopaths to tell some patients that they cannot be cured, because "the patient's
remedy has not yet been found or proved."
     Of course, each patient must be treated as an individual,
but to the extent that a patient has a disease, then that patient can be lumped
together with all patients suffering with that disease. All those needing Arnica
can be lumped together.
     The problem, then, lies in the issue of diagnosis.
As Hahnemann pointed out, there is no principle for choosing a medicine in allopathy,
so the solution has always been to take one or a few indications [symptoms] and
call this a disease. This is a simple fabrication. For example, all those suffering
from scarring and degeneration of the myelin sheath of the nerve cells are told
they suffer from Multiple Sclerosis. This diagnosis is simply descriptive, not
disclosive of the remedy. Then a drug is found that acts on this particular indication
and all MS patients are given this drug. While the game is ostensibly cure, this
is given up in practice, and what is sought is suppression of the indication.
     The conventional criticism of this approach in
homeopathy is that testing a remedy against such a fabricated condition will
never work because our remedies are not chosen on this basis. This is true. However,
it is not true that Hahnemann's medical system contains no typology. The typology
is one that matches remedy to disease. So, all patients with Arnica-like disease
get Arnica; all patients with Belladonna-like disease get Belladonna. Brilliant
system and it works every time. That is, Arnica always works for an Arnica-like
disease and Belladonna likewise works for a Belladonna-like disease. The problem
is how the people in a clinical trial are selected. They need to be selected
according to Hahnemann's disease nosology, which is a true diagnosis as it reveals
the curative medicine at the same time ("you have an Arnica-like disease, and
here is your Arnica to cure your disease"), not conventional, allopathic nosology,
which is not really a nosology but a description of an arbitrary selection of
a person's disease indications. What you get is an artificial condition, not
a true disease ("you have arthritis—inflammation of the joints—and
we use Drug X to treat arthritis").
     This seems fairly clear, yet why is there so much
confusion over the issue of individualization and why is it seen as the stumbling
block to recognition? The answer lies in the fact that conventional (so-called
classical) homeopathy thinks that individualization pertains to the patient,
not the disease. It is trite to say that the patient must be individualized,
as this only means that each case has to be examined as a new case. You can't
assume that new Patient B is going to be suffering from the same problem, however
categorized, as prior Patient A. What Hahnemann taught for all to see is that
it is the disease that must be individualized. So, both conventional medicine
and Hahnemann's medical system seek to find the disease. The difference is that
Hahnemann's system of diagnosis is based on a law of nature and conventional
medicine has no natural law principle, but only arbitrary groupings.
     The problem is then that homeopathy uses a totally
different approach to diagnosis, not that it individualizes and conventional
medicine doesn't.
Rudi Verspoor, FHCH, HD(RHom) DMH
Dean, Hahnemann College for Heilkunst
Ottawa Canada

Invitation to dialogue

Dear Editor:
Your journal is one of the leading periodicals in our homeopathic world. That
is why we would appreciate it if you would place this "Invitation to a Dialogue" in
your "Letters to the Editor."

Dear colleagues,
During the last months, all over the world positions have seemed to drift apart
concerning what the fundamental principles of homeopathy are and should be. In
Austria, we strongly believe that these conflicts have to be taken seriously.
Homeopathy was defined at the end of the 18th century. At the beginning of the
21st century, time is pressing, as we learn from the manner of discussion, to
state more precisely: What in theory and practice is (a) mandatory, (b) optional,
(c) inconsistent?
     In order to find answers, we are pleased to invite
the colleagues involved in the current discussion, to establish a dialogue. We,
the Austrian Society of Homoeopathic Medicine, will provide the infrastructure
for this meeting.
     This invitation goes to all who signed the "Manifest" [which
is appearing in the current issue of the American Journal of Homeopathic Medicine]
and the letter "Against Divisiveness" [which appeared in May 2001 Homeopathy
]. As soon as the groups have nominated their speakers, please contact
us at
     You will be most welcome in Austria, where in an
open-minded atmosphere a highly professional discussion will take place.
Sincerely yours,
Franz Swoboda
on behalf of the team of teachers of the Austrian Society of Homœopathic