PHILOSOPHY – SAMUEL HAHNEMANN
When it was announced that the long-awaited Sixth Edition of Hahnemann’s “Organon” was at last available and about to be published, there was great curiosity on the part of his present-day followers to see what changes, additions or developments were embodied in it.
What subjects had most interested and occupied the mind of the Old Master during the last years of his long life? What subjects did he regard as the most important and as most needing further elucidation? Had he changed his mind in regard to any of the fundamental principles of his philosophy? Had he formed any new theories? Had he changed his method of applying the principles which he had laid down in former editions?
Speculation on these questions was rife. There were some, like the writer, who believed that few changes would be found in the practical rules and methods which had stood the test of more than a century of experience and proved their permanent value in the cure of innumerable cases of disease. They expected that the changes would consist of a further development and elucidation of those theories and concepts which constituted the latest former additions to his system-abstruse subjects which did not appear or were only lightly touched upon in the early editions; subjects., for example, like those of vitality, dynamism and potentiation, which were the last to be developed and introduced into the “Organon.”
This conjecture turned out to be correct, and it is well for the medical world that it did. Never was there greater need than now that the medical profession should be reminded, as by a voice from the celestial world, that there is something more vital and more important for them and for suffering humanity than matter and materialism; than germs and germicides; than serums and vaccines; than mechanics and mechanisms; than pathological processes and products.
That “Something” is a fuller knowledge and realization of the spiritual nature of life or mind in organism; of life or mind as a spiritual, entitative power or principle manifesting itself in and through the physical organisms of which it is the architect and builder as well as the tenant.
Whatever tends to throw light upon the connection between mind and body; whatever enlarges or clarifies our conceptions of what Life is and how it builds its house, or performs its functions; whatever enlarges our knowledge of the relations between the various organs and systems of organs of the physical body; whatever tends to show how the living organism acts and reacts under the influence of external or internal agencies – mental, psychical or physical; that is important, and important in the highest degree, because the medical profession as a whole has largely neglected or ignored these phases of the subject and has regarded man merely as a mechanism actuated solely by physical forces-and treated him accordingly. From this misconception arise the most glaring errors, the most flagrant abuses and the most tragical results in the medical and surgical treatment of today.
Hahnemann, in his later life, with marvelous insight and striking prescience, fixed his attention principally upon the spiritual and dynamical aspects of the subject of medicine. Hence we find that the changes, additions and developments in the Sixth Edition of “The Organon” deal principally with these subjects. These remained longest in his mind. To them he gave his deepest and most mature thought. Evidently he regarded the results of his thought as sufficiently important to justify a new, and, as he termed it “most likely the last” edition of his immortal masterpiece, “THE ORGANON.”