Lectures on Homoeopathic Philosophy by James Tyler Kent

Health

Last modified on March 28th, 2016

Health

   ONLY DERANGED AND CURED IN DYNAMIC PLANES

Organon s 16. Our vital force, as a spirit-like dynamics, cannot be attacked and infected by injurious influences on the healthy organism caused by the external inimical forces that disturbs the harmonious play of life otherwise than in a spirit-like (dynamic) way, and in like manner all such morbid derangements (diseases) cannot be removed from it by the physician in any other way than by the spirit-like (dynamic, virtual) alternative powers of the serviceable medicines acting upon our spirit-like vital force, which preserves them through the medium of the sentient faculty of the nerves everywhere present in the organism, so that it is only by their dynamic action of the vital force that remedies are able to re-establish and actually re-establish health and vital harmony after the changes in the health of the patient cognizable by our senses (the totality of the symptoms) have revealed the disease to the carefully observing and investigating physician as fully as was requisite in order to enable him to cure it.

The s 16th paragraph furnishes the subjects that we will talk about this morning. It treats of three states: (1) of the state of health, or the normal activities of the body,. (2) of how that state is made sick or turned into disorder, and (3) of how that disordered state can be turned into health. If we could find a man in a state of perfect health, we might subject him to shock, to injuries, to the actions of the cruder things around us, and he would pass through them or they would pass away without leaving upon him any such thing as a disorder. He might be under the influence of that shock a short time, but when reaction came, if it came at all, it would leave him free from miasm, he would not have therefrom either an acute or chronic disease. It is only by the action of immaterial substances, simple substance acting upon a plane similar to the plane of his susceptibility, that he can become infected with a sickness; that is, the resultant action of a substance capable of operating from his innermost two his outermost, and establishing evidence which we call symptoms. If the outermost alone is acted upon the vital force of the man is only temporarily disturbed., but there is not established a definite disorder (not even a limited one) that can run a course with a beginning, a period of progress and decline, such as the miasmas do.

Whatever depresses the tissues of man, or his bodily functions, only acts temporarily, and is not capable of establishing a true disease. Take, for instance, the cruder drugs that we see used as a physic. You may give the patient the coarser and cruder forms of drugs as purgatives and emetics, and he will go through the shock and return to his original state. It is only after the most violent and long continued use of liquids that there can be implanted upon him a drug disease, and even that is largely superficial in comparison to a natural diseased condition. The constant use of Bromide of Potassium will produce effects in time, but that drug does not go to the depths, it operates upon the tissue, producing the coarser form of disease, but not miasmatic in characters. Take also the coarser poisons as an example. Many of them can be taken into the stomach in crude form with very little manifestation upon the vital force, indeed the more active and virulent and condensed the poison the smaller the collective symptoms image. The small pox crust can be swallowed and it will be digested and very little trouble come from it, but the inhalation of the atmosphere that contains the aura of smallpox upon a plane corresponding to the susceptibility of the individual will bring him down with the disease having a definite prodrome, a period of progress and a period of decline, showing that the very foundation of the man;s nature has been struck. Such as operation is upon the internals of man upon his invisible, immaterial substances, and it operates from within out, producing ultimate in his tissues, establishing results upon the skin.

Hahnemann in this paragraph affirms that nothing, except in the form of a simple substance, can so implant itself upon the economy as to run its course as a disease either acute or chronic. No disease can implant itself upon the economy through its ultimate forms; only in its invisible forms can it so act. All diseases known to man are in the form of simple substance, an invisible something that cannot be detected by the chemist or the microscopist, and will never be detected in the natural world. Disease cause is known, and known only, from its effects; it is not capable of investigation by the natural senses and can only be investigated as to its results. Everything that can be seen, felt or observed, or detected with the microscope, is but an ultimate, a result. It is only by the understanding, by reasoning from first to last and then back again, that we can perceive that disease causes are invisible.

The body can be affected, the tissues can be affected, and ultimate can be affected by ultimates, there can be friction between ultimates things in this world can collide with other things in this world and they may destroy each other; ultimates may destroy ultimates; but such a thing as diseases occurring in ultimates except through dynamic changes is impossible

Nor can any agency which is an ultimate act upon the human economy curatively, turning into vital order the innermost of life. Vital disorder cannot be turned into order except by something similar in quality to the vital force. It is not similitude in quantity that we want, in weights and measures, but it is similarity in quality, in power, in plane, that must be sought for.

Medicines, therefore, cannot affect the high and interior planes of the physical economy unless they are raised to the plane of similarity in quality. The individual who needs Sulphur in the very highest degrees may take Sulphur sufficient to move his bowels, may rub it upon the skin, may wear it in his stockings, can take Sulphur baths, all without effect upon his disease. In that form the drug is not in correspondence with his sickness. it does not affect him in the same plane in which he is sick, and so it cannot affect the cause and flow from thence to the circumference, So with all the coarser drugs, they do not cure. We sometimes see the outermost effects of disease, disease located in the outer planes, temporarily removed by the lower potencies and crude drugs, but it is only as to the exteriors and ultimates that the cure is effected, and as it does not reach the innermost degree it is not permanent. In acute diseases also crude drugs sometimes accomplish their purpose, because the outermost which they affect is only on the surface and the innermost has, in acute, disease, the tendency to go away of itself; if his life can simply be spared until the diseases has run its course the patient will recover. But the chronic miasmas are only reached as to their ultimate symptoms, and these are caused to subside only temporarily or are suppressed by the action of the crude or ultimate forms of medicine.

I look back upon the time when my own mind was in a cloud as to his subject, and if I refer to it here it may be of use to you I remember when I first read from Hahnemann that potentized medicines would cure he sick that it seemed to me a mystery. I had no knowledge upon which to found beliefs in such things,. I began to practice with the lower potencies and with crude drugs in attempting to carry out the law, but with these means I was able to cure only superficial complaints. My work was far from satisfactory, yet it was somewhat better than the old things., it was milder than psyching and purging and emesis. Of course I rested upon my opinions and belief for my knowledge. everyone does that.

Later I resolved to test the 30th potency to see if there was not yet medicine in it, and I prepared with my own hands the 30th potency of Podophyllum with water on the centesimal scale, after the fashion of Hahnemann, having been told that water was as good as alcohol and it was only the attenuation that was required. This was during an epidemic of diarrhoea that looked like Podophyllum, but I had not the courage to give the 30th and still continued to use my stronger medicines. One day a child was brought into my office in the mother’s arms. She brought it in hastily, and it did not seem as if it could live long. It was an infant, and while it lay in her arms a thin yellowish fecal stool ran over my carpet. The odor struck me as like that I had been reading about as the odor of the Podophyllum stool; it was horribly offensive, stinking, and the stoll was so copious that the mother made the remark that she did not know where it all came from. I said to myself, this is a case upon which to rest Hahnemann’s 30th potency. So I fixed up some of the Podophyllum 30 and put it on the child’s tongue and sent the mother home, fearing that the child would soon die, as it was very ill, face pinched and drawn, cadaveric, and had a dreadful odor about it. Next morning when making my rounds I had to pass the house. I expected to see crepe on the door. I did not dare to call, though I was very much worried about it, so I drove past; but there was no crepe on the door. I drove home again that way, although it was quite a distance out of the way, and still there was no crepe on the door; but standing in the door-way was the grandmother, who said: “Doctor, the baby is all right this morning”. Then I began to feel better, thinking I had not killed it. Perhaps some of you have been in the same state of mind.

That little child did not need any more medicine. After that I had quite a number of Podophyllum cases and the 30th did the work to my astonishment. It was different from anything I had ever seen; the cures were almost instantaneous, it seemed as if there would be no more stool after the first dose of medicine. I did not always give single dose. I used that 30th all the season, and then made up my mind that if the 30th of Podophyllum was good other 30th would also be, and I ought to have as many of them as possible. I made a good many 30th by hand, and finally succeeded in making up one hundred and twenty- six remedies. , some of them in the 200th potency, and these I used. Then I procured a set of 200th and higher and practiced with them. I followed on in this way and in a few years I discovered that by giving higher and higher potencies the remedies seemed to operate more and more interiorly.

I found that a chronic case that would be relieved by moderately high potencies would only improve for a matter of weeks, but on the administration of much higher potencies the work would be taken up. and in that way the same patient could be carried on from one potency to another. If I give you the conversion of one patient with me from time to time you may understand better what I mean. I saw this patient for the first time some fifteen years ago, when he was stoop-shouldered and had a fairly phthisical aspect. He had a catarrhal state of the chest, and it looked as though it might end in phthisis. On his symptoms he received Sulphur about 6 m. He was violently aggravated by this dose of medicine, all his symptoms were made worse, and he came back to the office saying that the medicine had made him sick. I had attained knowledge of the aggravation from a similar remedy. so I gave him sugar. At the end of another week he came back and told me he was better. much better, that he did not want me to give him any more of that first medicine, but he wanted more of the last, as it had made him so much better. So I kept him on the medicine which pleased him for a period of probably six or seven weeks. One time he returned and told me he did not want that last medicine, but he wanted that medicine that helped him so. By that I knew enough to give him another dose of Sulphur. Within the next day or two he ran in and said, “You young rascal, you gave me that medicine that made me sick in the first place,”: so he got sugar again and went on this time for five or six weeks, or perhaps longer. Then he came am again saying, “: Now, I do not think you understand me, for I am having my old symptoms back. I wish you would study my case again,” So I went all over his case and he got another dose of Sulphur 6 m. He reports this time, “Well, I do not feel any better; I am just about the same.” He was not stirred up this time, you see. I waited a little longer and saw no relief from the last dose. Here are all the symptoms calling for Sulphur, shall I give him crude Sulphur? I cannot give a remedy that is not indicated. The experience of the older men says “Go higher”. I gave him sulfur 55 m., and in a few days he came beck upon me, saying, “You rascal, you gave me that first medicine again I don’t want that stuff.”: Finally I got him cooled down, gave him some sugar and assured him that he would be better in a few days, and he went on for six or seven weeks with great improvement. After a while I explained to him that where the remedy did not act I had to give him something to stir him up. Of course I did not say anything to him about sugar.

When you have learned what your medicines will do it is a good thing to say to the patient, “Do not be alarmed or astonished when such and such things happen.” Otherwise they will get alarmed and go off and perhaps get another doctor. The 55 m. of Sulphur relieved that patient in a couple of doses, far apart, and then ceased to relieve him any more. Next he received the c.m. which worked just as the other potencies had done, and finally he got to the mm. which acted just like the c.m. and from that potency he went on being restored to health. When you see these things you have a confirmation in them of the doctrines of the law. Experience does not lead to these things, but principles which thereafter are confirmed by experience. When a patient has been carried up through a series of potencies he will often remain unaffected by that remedy in a lower realm of potency or in the crude, unless he is overwhelmingly dosed by it, and then he will be poisoned.,

The third proposition in this paragraph is that medicines will not act creatively, or in the way to turn the body into order and turn off disease, unless potentized to correspond to the degrees in which the man is sick. Such as are sick in a middle plane are sick from that plane to the outermost. Such as are sick in the interior planes are sick throughout to the outermost. When the disorder is in the very depth of his physical nature then it is in the form of chronic disease, i.e. all there is of him is sick, and of such there is no tendency to recovery but a continued progress. Such is the order of psora, syphilis and sycosis.

The nutritive plane is entirely in the outermost, that is, in the tissues., Assimilation goes on in the tissues. It is simply in the realm of tissues and ultimates that crude drugs operate; they can only disturb ultimates, and the inharmonious condition is the harmony of ultimates, the outermost plane. Of course, if the outermost of the physical is disturbed the whole economy suffers, and the body ceases to furnish a good instrument to be operated upon by the powers within; but a true disease, with periods of prodrome, progress and decline or continuance, cannot be implanted upon the economy except it be by a dynamic cause. And hence necessarily man cannot be cured except by drugs attenuated until they have become similar to the nature or quality of disease cause. Disease cause and the disease-curing drug must be similar in nature; unlike causes would not produce like effects. We can arrive at similar causes by studying the effects that are similar. When we examine into a case and find a certain group of symptoms and in the effects produced by a certain drug we see like symptoms, we have a right to presume that the quality or nature in both is similar. The causes must be similar if the effects are similar in nature and quality. When the physician goes to the bedside he asks himself, Do I know a remedy that has produced, upon a healthy man, symptoms like these? He must pass judgment upon the symptoms, he must be an artist in application and capable of discerning the finer shades of difference and similitude.

About the author

James Tyler Kent

James Tyler Kent

James Tyler Kent (1849–1916) was an American physician. Prior to his involvement with homeopathy, Kent had practiced conventional medicine in St. Louis, Missouri. He discovered and "converted" to homeopathy as a result of his wife's recovery from a serious ailment using homeopathic methods.
In 1881, Kent accepted a position as professor of anatomy at the Homeopathic College of Missouri, an institution with which he remained affiliated until 1888. In 1890, Kent moved to Pennsylvania to take a position as Dean of Professors at the Post-Graduate Homeopathic Medical School of Philadelphia. In 1897 Kent published his magnum opus, Repertory of the Homœopathic Materia Medica. Kent moved to Chicago in 1903, where he taught at Hahnemann Medical College.

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