The Psychological Point of View by Stuart Close
Great Personalities:- All great forward movements in religion, science or art originate in the mind of some individual who appears at the psychological moment and announces his mission. His personality and his teaching represent the truth for which he stands.
Always following the appearance of great teacher or leader, opponents, detractors or corruptors spring up and attempt to stay or destroy, or divert to their own glory the progress of the new movement. Disciples or would-be disciples have always to be on guard against false teaching. Their principal safeguard is in maintaining a sincere and intelligent loyalty to the historic leader whose personality and teachings represent the original truth, and in intellectual and personal fellowship with other followers who maintain the same attitude and relation.
Lesser lights and lesser leaders there must and always will be to whom, each in his own rank and degree, honor and loyalty are due; but the disciple is never above his master. He only is “The Master” to whom the first great revelation of truth was made and by whom it was first developed and proclaimed; for such epochal men are supremely endowed and specially prepared, usually by many years of seclusion, intense thought and labor. They are raised up at last to do a great work. They stand on the mountain tops of human experience, from whence they have a field of view and a grasp of truth never before attainable. Like Moses they have as it were, received the “Tables of the Law” direct from the hand of the almighty.
Homoeopathy, the science and art of therapeutic medication, has a twofold existence as an institution and in the personnel of its loyal, individual representatives.
These two constituents are pervaded by a common animating spirit, which finds expression respectively in its organizations and literature and in the life and practice of its followers.
Homoeopathy a System – The fundamental principles of homoeopathy are embodied in a system of doctrines, laws and rules of practice which were first formulated, named and systematically set forth by Hahnemann in his Organon of the Rational Art of Healing. By that, homoeopathy was given a name an individuality and a character which defines and identifies it for all time.
The practical demonstration of homoeopathy is committed to its personal representatives, whose success will be proportionate to their efficiency. Efficiency in homoeopathy implies and involves native ability, acquired technical proficiency and logical consistency in the application of its principles. The exercise of these qualifications requires honesty, courage, fidelity to a high ideal and a right point of view.
Every problem with which homoeopathy deals, therefore, must be approached and every technical process conducted systematically from a particular and definite mental standpoint. The student or practitioner of homoeopathy must not only know what this point of view is, but he must acquire it and act from it in each case. This might be called the personal side of homoeopathy; for in the last analysis homoeopathy, from the psychological standpoint, is essentially a state of mind existent in the person of its representative. In this sense personality, or the sum of all the essential attributes and qualities of the individual is a condition-precedent to professional success.
Having defined the qualities and attributes that enter into the make-up of the homoeopathician the various practical problems and technical processes of homoeopathy can be taken up and discussed from the point of view already established.
As a prerequisite to a clear understanding of the subject, as well as to the attainment of efficiency in the practical application of its principles it is assumed that homoeopathy is what it is claimed to be a complete system of therapeutic medication. As a scientific system it is made up of certain facts, laws, rules and methods or processes, each of which is an integral part of the whole.
Nothing conflicting with its established principles can be added to it nothing taken away, if it is to stand in its integrity. Once it is determined what these essential elements and principles are, homoeopathy must stand or fall as a whole.
A mutilated homoeopathy is a lame and crippled thing, compelled to sustain itself by crutches, splints and braces. An emasculated homoeopathy is an impotent homoeopathy, without the virility necessary to maintain or reproduce itself. Some shortsighted, superficial and weak-kneed individuals, actuated by their prejudices, or through their failure to comprehend the subject as a whole, have adopted an emasculated homoeopathy for themselves and attempted to support their crippled eunuch as a candidate for general acceptance. Subjects such as the “life force” the single remedy potentiation, infinitesimals, the minimum dose, and the totality of the symptoms as a basis for the prescription, they have characterized as unessential “so long as the principle of *similia was maintained”. They do not perceive that each of these doctrines is logically drawn from and inseparably connected with the one fundamental doctrine which they profess to accept and apply. It is this which has brought homoeopathy, *as an institution, down to a point where its very existence is threatened.
Within its sphere homoeopathy is entirely adequate to meet all its own problems in its own way, when it is practiced in its purity and entirety. But homoeopathy will fail if it is forced outside or beyond its real sphere, or if it is perverted and emasculated. To know the true sphere and limitations of homoeopathy is as necessary to practical success as to know its technic and resources.
Mere formal knowledge of the “law of cure” and the technic of prescribing does not make a homoeopathic physician in the true sense of the word. Something more than that is needed. Into that cold and inert body the breath of life must be breathed before it becomes a living soul. Homoeopathy is a spirit as well as a body of rules and principles and the spirit must be incarnated in every true believer and follower. That incarnation takes place when the mind of the neophyte is opened to the philosophical truths which underlie both the method and the principles, and he becomes imbued with the desire and the purpose to make them the ruling influence of his life.
Methods of adapting and applying the principles have changed to some extent as the scope and technic of prescribing have been developed, but homoeopathy is essentially the same to-day that it was a hundred years ago. Individual practitioners, nominally followers of Hahnemann, have drifted away from his teachings and method, and some have attempted to inject into or graft upon homoeopathy all sorts of fads and fancies; but the mongrel thing thereby created deceives no one who has derived his knowledge from the fountain head. Homoeopathy as set forth by Hahnemann, while not perfect, is complete in all essentials as a system. It is supreme within its legitimate sphere because it is the only method of therapeutic medication which is based upon a fixed and definite law of nature.
The validity of this law has been disputed by the dominant school of medicine ever since it was first promulgated by Hahnemann; but it has never been denied by any one who has complied with all the conditions necessary for a scientific demonstration of its verity. To comply with those conditions in good faith and test the matter is to be convinced.
It is conceivable and probably true that one reason for the rejection of the homoeopathic principle is that the principle, as usually stated, has never been fully understood. It is a fact that most, if not all of attempts (With an exception to be brought forward later) to state the principle have been faulty. Analysis and comparison have not been carried far enough, in most cases, to clearly identify the principle and its relations, and establish homoeopathy in the “circle of the sciences” where it belongs.
The dominant school of medicine has not only denied that the so- called “homoeopathic law” is a law of nature, but denied that there is any general law which governs the relation between drugs and disease and have ceased searching for one. The existing situation has never been better characterized than by Mons. Marchand de Calvi in an eloquent and stirring address to the French Academy of Medicine.
“In medicine”, he said, there is not nor has there been for some time, either principle, faith or law. We build a Tower of Babel, or rather we are not so far advanced for we build nothing; we are in a vast plain where a multitude of people pass backwards and forwards; some carry bricks, others pebbles, others grains of sand, but no one dreams of the cement; the foundations of the edifice are not yet laid, and as to the general plan of the work it is not even sketched. In other words, medical literature swarms with facts, of which the most part are periodically produced with the most tiresome monotony; these are called observations and clinical facts; a number of laborers consider and reconsider particular questions of pathology or therapeutics that is called original research. The mass of such labors and facts is enormous; no reader can wade through them but no one has any general doctrine. The most general doctrine that exists is the doctrine of homoeopathy! This is strange and lamentable; a disgrace to medicine but such is the fact.”
Principles and Organizations.- A common mistake, and one of the greatest that can be made, is that of rendering to organizations the spiritual submission that belongs in the highest degree to principles only.
Organizations are formed for the purpose of maintaining and advancing principles, but it often happens that in the stress of building and maintaining the organization the principles are pushed into the background, neglected or forgotten. The man too often becomes the slave of the machine instead of its master. The organization becomes a frankenstein which destroys its creator. Worse even than the mere neglect or forgetting, is the wilful corruption and perversion of principles which is often the result of the mad struggle for organization prestige, power and position. Moreover, individuals connected with or responsible for the success of the organization are easily infected with the germ of selfish personal ambition. They come to regard their official contract with it as a through ticket on the Limited to the city of their dreams.
Out of these conditions, which it is not necessary to illustrate or enlarge upon, arise some of the most serious problems of the world. Organizations civil, military, medical, political, social, religious and educational may and often do become corrupt, mercenary, tyrannical; a menace to liberty and progress; enemies to the principles they are supposed to represent and agents of compulsion.
The individual truth-seeker must therefore keep his eyes open and walk circumspectly if he would keep in the path of progress, maintain his mental integrity and preserve liberty of thought, speech and action.
It has come to pass that individual liberty is calculated only in percentages now. The increasing pressure of official and institutional compulsion encircles us. The moral compulsion of the “Drive” is but a short remove from the physical compulsion of the “Draft”. Metaphorically the internment camp, the prison the dead wall and the firing squad are just beyond.
The world is in a state of war. It is a “War of the Worlds” The political world, the industrial world, the social world, the religious world, the medical world-organizations all are torn by war because importance has been attached to organizations that belongs only to principles.
Organizations like men are subject to disease, decay and death. When they become corrupt they die, for corruption is elementary death. Institutions, nations, whole civilizations have died, disappeared and been forgotten until brought to light by the excavations of archeologists centuries or perhaps millenniums afterwards. But principles never die.
Principles are essential truth, represented by or corresponding to facts. The essential characteristic of truth is its steadfast conformity to law and order. Truth is Life, Mind, Spirit: absolute, infinite and immortal. Organisms in which truth embodies itself are transitory. They change, decay and pass away, but life is continuous. Truth, like the fabled phoenix, burns itself on the altar and arise from its own ashes.
Homoeopathy, as already pointed out, has a two-fold existence as an institution or organization and in the individuals who make up its following. The spirit and principles of homoeopathy have never been and never can be solely in the keeping of any institution, for organizations are continually changing and dying.
Individuals unite in small or great societies and work together harmoniously for a time but not for long. Disagreements arise, they dissolve their original relations and form others; but the work goes on because the Spirit of Truth always draws together those of like minds for the attainment of a common object. At critical periods and in the long run it is always the individual who preserves passes on and perpetuates the truth.
Upon individuals, therefore, as living embodiments and representatives of the truth, rests a great and solemn responsibility. No man can shift his personal responsibility to an organization. As a creator and member of organizations he does not cease to be an individual trustee, nor should he become slavishly subject to the organization. The creator is greater than the creature. He may work in or by means of an organization, but he may not work for an organization, lest he presently find himself in bondage to a creature which has become corrupt.
It follows that our greatest concern as followers of Hahnemann and representatives of homoeopathy is primarily with individuals with men and principles rather than with organizations. We will build men into organizations and keep the organizations clean and useful as well as long as we can; but let us be sure that we build principles into men.
Nature puts man first. Truth is not revealed to institutions, but to men. Let us have done with fictions and deal with realities. An organization is a machine; an inanimate, soulless thing; a figment of the imagination; a creature of the law, deriving its existence and seeming vitality only from the individual men who compose it; ceasing to be when their relations are dissolved. Man is a real living, thinking human being, “made in the image and likeness of God” an individual embodiment and personification of a portion of the Infinite and Universal Mind, endowed with the ability to exercise creative power within his appointed sphere and destined for immortality. Let him exercise it in liberty, using organizations judiciously but not becoming enslaved by them.