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Organon by Hahnemann, aphorisms 43 - 52
"Similar diseases"

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Organon aphorism §43

Totally different, however, is the result when TWO SIMILAR diseases meet together in the organism, that is to say, when to the disease already present a stronger similar one is added. In such cases we see how a cure can be effected by the operations of nature, and we get a lesson as to how man ought to cure.

Organon aphorism §44

Two SIMILAR diseases can neither (as is asserted of dissimilar diseases in I) REPEL one another, nor (as has been shown of dissimilar diseases in ii) SUSPEND one another, so that the old one shall return after the new one has run its course; and just as little can two SIMILAR diseases (as has been demonstrated in iii respecting dissimilar affections) EXIST BESIDE EACH OTHER in the same organism, or together form a DOUBLE complex disease.

Organon aphorism §45

No! two diseases, differing, it is true, in kind, (Vide, SUPRA, (§ 26), note) but very similar in their phenomena and effects and in the sufferings and symptoms they severally produce, invariably annihilate one another whenever they meet together in the organism; the stronger disease, namely, annihilates the weaker, and that for this simple reason, because the stronger morbific power when it invades the system, by reason of its similarity of action involves precisely the SAME parts of the organism that were previously affected by the weaker morbid irritation, which, consequently, can no longer act on these parts, but is extinguished; (39) or (in other words), the new similar but stronger morbific potency controls the feelings of the patient and hence the life principle on account of its peculiarity, can no longer feel the weaker similar which becomes extinguished—exists no longer—for it was never anything material, but a dynamic—spirit-like—(conceptual) affection. The life principle henceforth is affected only and this but temporarily by the new, similar but stronger morbific potency.

Organon aphorism §46

Many examples might be adduced of diseases which, in the course of nature, have been homeopathically cured by other diseases presenting similar symptoms, were it not necessary, as our object is to speak about something determinate and indubitable, to confine our attention solely to those (few) diseases which are invariably the same, arise from a fixed miasm, and hence merit a distinct name.

Among these the smallpox, so dreaded on account of the great number of its serious symptoms, occupies a prominent position, and it has removed and cured a number of maladies with similar symptoms.

How frequently does smallpox produce violent ophthalmia, sometimes even causing blindness! And see! by its inoculation Dezoteux(40) cured a chronic ophthalmia permanently, and Leroy(41) another.

An amaurosis of two years' duration, consequent on suppressed scald-head, was perfectly cured by it, according to Klein. (42)

How often does smallpox cause deafness and dyspnoea! And both these chronic diseases it removed on reaching its acme, as J. Fr. Closs (43) observed.

Swelling of the testicle, even of a very severe character, is a frequent symptom of smallpox, and on this account it was enabled, as Klein (44) observed, to cure, by virtue of similarity, a large hard swelling of the left testicle, consequent on a bruise. And another observer (45) saw a similar swelling of the testicle cured by it.

Among the troublesome symptoms of smallpox is a dysenteric state of the bowels; and it subdued, as Fr. Wendt(46) observed, a case of dysentery, as a similar morbific agent.

Smallpox coming on after vaccination, as well on account of its greater strength as its great similarity, at once removes entirely the cow-pox homeopathically, and does not permit it to come to maturity; but, on the other hand, the cow-pox when near maturity does, on account of its great similarity, homeopathically diminish very much the supervening smallpox and make it much milder,(47) as Muhry(48) and many others testify.

The inoculated COW-POX, whose lymph, besides the protective matter, contains the contagion of a general cutaneous eruption of another nature, consisting of usually small, dry (rarely large, pustular) pimples, resting on a small red areola, frequently conjoined with round red cutaneous spots and often accompanied by the most violent itching, which rash appears in not a few children several days BEFORE, more frequently, however, AFTER the red areola of the cow-pock, and goes off in a few days, leaving behind small, red, hard spots on the skin;—the inoculated cow-pox, I say, after it has taken cures perfectly and permanently, in a homeopathic manner, by the similarity of this accessory miasm, analogous cutaneous eruptions of children, often of very long standing and of a very troublesome character, as a number of observers assert.(49)

The cow-pox, a peculiar symptom of which is, to cause tumefaction of the arm,(50) cured, after it broke out, a SWOLLEN half-paralyzed arm.(51)

The fever accompanying cow-pox, which occurs at the time of the production of the red areola, cured homeopathically intermittent fever in two individuals, as the younger Hardege (52) reports, confirming what J. Hunter (53) had already observed, that two fevers (similar diseases) cannot co-exist in the same body.

The MEASLES bears a strong resemblance in the character of its fever and cough to the whooping-cough, and hence it was that Bosquillon (54) noticed, in an epidemic where both these affections prevailed, that many children who then took measles remained free from whooping-cough. They would all have been protected from, and rendered incapable of being infected by, the whooping-cough in that and all subsequent epidemics, by the measles, if the whooping-cough were not a disease that has only a partial similarity to the measles, that is to say, if it had also a cutaneous eruption similar to what the latter possesses. As it is, however, the measles can but preserve a large number from whooping-cough, and that only in the epidemic prevailing at the time.

If, however, the MEASLES come in contact with a disease resembling it in its chief symptom, the eruption, it can indisputably remove, and effect a homeopathic cure of the latter. Thus a chronic herpetic eruption was entirely and permanently (homeopathically) cured(55) by the breaking out of the measles, as Kortum (56) observed. An excessively burning miliary rash on the face, neck, and arms, that had lasted six years, and was aggravated by every change of weather, on the invasion of measles assumed the form of a swelling of the surface of the skin; after the measles had run its course the exanthem was cured, and returned no more.(57)

Organon aphorism §47

Nothing could teach the physician in a plainer and more convincing manner than the above what kind of artificial morbific agent (medicine) he ought to choose in order to cure in a sure, rapid and permanent manner, conformably with the process that takes place in nature.

Organon aphorism §48

Neither in the course of nature, as we see from all the above examples, nor by the physician's art, can an existing affection or malady in any one instance be removed by a dissimilar morbific agent, be it ever so strong, but SOLELY BY ONE THAT IS SIMILAR IN SYMPTOMS AND IS SOMEWHAT STRONGER, according to eternal, irrevocable laws of nature, which have not hitherto been recognized.

Organon aphorism §49

We should have been able to meet with many more real, natural homeopathic cures of this kind if, on the one hand, the attention of observers had been more directed to them, and, on the other hand, if nature had not been so deficient in helpful homeopathic diseases.

Organon aphorism §50

Mighty Nature herself has, as we see, at her command, as instruments for effecting homeopathic cures, little besides the miasmatic diseases of constant character (the itch), measles and smallpox,(58) morbific agents which,(59) asremedies, are either more dangerous to life and more to be dreaded than the disease they are to cure, or of such a kind (like the itch) that, after they have effected the cure, they themselves require curing, in order to be eradicated in their turn—both circumstances that make their employment, as homeopathic remedies, difficult, uncertain and dangerous. And how few diseases are there to which man is subject that find their similar remedy in smallpox, measles or itch! Hence, in the course of nature, very few maladies can be cured by these uncertain and hazardous homeopathic remedies, and the cure by their instrumentality is also attended with danger and much difficulty, for this reason, that the doses of these morbific powers cannot be diminished according to circumstances, as doses of medicine can; but the patient afflicted with an analogous malady of long standing must be subjected to the entire dangerous and tedious disease, to the entire disease of smallpox, measles (or itch), which in its turn has to be cured. And yet, as is seen, we can point to some striking homeopathic cures effected by this lucky concurrence, all so many incontrovertible proofs of the great, the sole therapeutic law of nature that obtains in them: CURE BY SYMPTOM SIMILARITY!

Organon aphorism §51

This therapeutic law is rendered obvious to all intelligent minds by these facts, and they are amply sufficient for this end. But, on the other hand, see what advantages man has over crude Nature in her happy-go-lucky operations. How many thousands more of homeopathic morbific agents has not man at his disposal for the relief of his suffering fellow-creatures in the medicinal substances universally distributed throughout creation! In them he has producers of disease of all possible varieties of action, for all the innumerable, for all conceivable and inconceivable natural diseases, to which they can render homeopathic aid—morbific agents (medicinal substances), whose power, when their remedial employment is completed, being overcome by the vital force, disappears spontaneously without requiring a second course of treatment for its extirpation, like the itch— artificial morbific agents, which the physician can attenuate, subdivide and potentize almost to an infinite extent, and the dose of which he can diminish to such a degree that they shall remain only slightly stronger than the similar natural disease they are employed to cure; so that in this incomparable method of cure, there is no necessity for any violent attack upon the organism for the eradication of even an inveterate disease of old standing; the cure by this method takes place by only a gentle, imperceptible and yet often rapid transition from the tormenting natural disease to the desired state of permanent health.

Organon aphorism §52

There are but two principle methods of cure: the one based only on accurate observation of nature, on careful experimentation and pure experience, the homeopathic (before we never designedly used) and a second which does not do this, the heteropathic or allopathic. Each opposes the other, and only he who does not know either can hold the delusion that they can ever approach each other or even become united, or to make himself so ridiculous as to practice at one time homeopathically at another allopathically, according to the pleasure of the patient; a practice which may be called criminal treason against divine homeopathy.

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Organon notes and explanatory remarks

--- 45 Organon aphorism ---

[39] Just as the image of a lamp's flame is rapidly overpowered and effaced from our retina by the stronger sunbeam impinging on the eye.

--- 46 Organon aphorism ---

[40] TRAITE DE L'INOCULATION, p. 189.

[41] HEILKUNDE FIIR MUTTER, p. 384.

[42] INTERPRES CLINICUS, p. 293.

[43] NEUE HEILART DER KINDERPOCKEN, Ulm, 1769, p. 68; and SPECIM., obs. No. 18.

[44] OP. CIT.

[45] NOV. ACT. NAT. CUR., vol. i, obs. 22.

[46] NACHRICHT VON DEM KRANKCNINSTITUT ZU ERLANGEN, I/83.

[47] This seems to be the reason for this beneficial remarkable fact namely that since the general distribution of Jenner's Cow Pox vaccination, human smallpox never again appeared as epidemically or virulently as 40-50 years before when one city visited lost at least one-half and often three-quarters of its children by death of this miserable pestilence.

[48] Willan, UEBER DIE KUHPOCKENIMPFUNG, AUS DEM ENGL., MIT ZUSATZEN G. P. MUHRY, Gottingen, 1808.

[49] Especially Clavier, Hurel and Desmormeaux, in the BULLETIN DES SCIENCES MEDICALES, PUBLIE PAR LES MEMBRES DU COMITE CENTRAL DE LA SOC. DE MEDECINE DU DEPARTEMENT DE V EURE, 1808; also in the JOURNAL DE MEDICINE CONTINUE, vol. xv, p. 206.

[50] Balhorn, in HUF ELAND'S JOURNAL, 10, ii.

[51] Stevenson, in Duncan's ANNALS OF MEDICINE, lustr. 2, vol. i, pt. 2, No. 9.

[52] In HUF ELAND'S JOURNAL, xxiii.

[53] ON THE VENEREAL DISEASE, p. 4.

[54] Cullen's ELEMENTS OF PRACTICAL MEDICINE, pt. 2, i, 3, ch. vii.

[55] Or at least that symptom was removed.

[56] In HUF ELAND'S JOURNAL, xx, 3, p. 50.

[57] Rau, UEBER D. WERTH DES HORN. HEILV., Heidelb., 1824, p. 85.

--- 50 Organon aphorism ---

[58] And the exanthematous contagious principle present in the cow-pox lymph.

[59] Namely, smallpox and measles.


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