Homeopathy – Medicine for the New Millennium – page 105

in the personality. Later, impulses of an almost superstitious na- ture appear. Kent describes this state beautifully when he says,
A strange thought comes to his mind that if he goes past a certain corner of the street he will create a sensation, will fall down and have a fit, and to avoid that he will go around the block. He is so reduced in his mental state that he admits into the mind all sorts of impulses…
For example, a patient may become preoccupied with the thought that he must avoid stepping on the cracks in a sidewalk. He re- alizes it is silly but cannot bring himself to step on a crack. Lat- er, this impulsive and obsessive tendency may result in paranoid superstitions and fixed ideas. Kent lists Conium and Zincum in the Repertory under the rubric ‘Superstitious’, but in my opin- ion Argentum nitricum, Stramonium and Rhus tox. should also be added.
It is at this point that one can see the development of a very pe- culiar and characteristic type of impulsiveness. It seems that nor- mal thought control mechanisms are hampered in this patient. When an idea occurs to him, he is unable to push it aside. In fact, the more the patient tries to force thoughts from his mind, the stronger the impulse becomes. Some examples will be pro- vided to illustrate this characteristic. Kent again gives an excel- lent description:
When crossing a bridge or high place the thought comes that he might kill himself, or perhaps he might jump off, or what if he should jump off, and sometimes the actual impulse comes to jump off the bridge into the water.
A patient may be sitting on a balcony when the idea comes to his mind, ‘What would happen if I were to jump off?’ Of course, such a thought is not uncommon, but with this patient the thought does not simply pass away. Instead, the idea becomes lodged in the patient’s mind, and he begins to fantasize about it. He sees himself getting out of his chair and walking to the edge. He becomes more and more wrapped up in this fantastic scenario as the impulse gains momentum, almost hypnotizing him, until he actually finds himself walking to the railing. Then, just at the moment the impulse reaches its crescendo and he begins to lift his leg over the rail, the image shatters, and the patient re-