Finding Your Way Through The Forest of Symptoms
by Ton Jansen
Plant Family Themes
Reviewed by Rochelle Marsden
First impressions of this book were, ‘Wow it is soooo…. heavy and colourful’. This is a substantial hardback with beautiful glossy pages and a very clear print.
The book begins with a forward from Roger Savage, a well-known homeopath in the UK and Louise Wijnkoop who both edited the book. In the first line they use the words ‘remarkable materia medica’ to describe this book.
The book begins with a comprehensive 14 page contents list which firstly gives the plant family names in alphabetical order e.g. Aceraceae, Acer Family, and then the members of that family which are described, i.e. Acer campetris, Field maple and Acer saccharum, Sugar maple. This makes it easy to find the plant you are looking for if you are already familiar with these.
The Introduction is written by Ton who begins by telling us that he has described ‘more than 65 plant families, consisting of 107 trees and bushes and almost 250 flowering plants’. It’s amazing that he has used all these remedies in his practice. Although a remedy worked quite well for a patient, he set out to find other members of that family which he found worked even better and may not be in our repertories. This is the information he is sharing in this book.
Let’s now look inside the book in more detail. I will use Anacardiaceae, the Cashew family as a typical example. He first gives the Family theme which is printed in black on a vivid green background. Next comes the first member of this Family Anacardium orientale which most of us will know well. There is a large beautiful photo of this tree next to which is the description of it. Next again on the vivid green background is ‘Tree theme’ where firstly you get the Keywords of ‘Hide-Compensate-Not free-Obligation’ and a brief but useful description of this remedy giving the keynotes of it and the main physical parts of the body that it works on. Underneath is the DD of other remedies or families. On the next page begins the same format for 7 other remedies in this family which include the Mango tree – Mangifera indica and our old favourite Rhus Tox- Poison ivy. Of the 8 remedies in total for this family, 6 have a case described. All the cases in the book are printed in black on a vivid yellow background. They are not long drawn out cases to read but just the basics on which Ton prescribed and how he prescribed. In some cases, he gives the ‘opening remedy’ which may be the miasmatic one and then tells us what he gave as the (detox) course. The follow up to this is then given.
I will also give you an example from the Rhus typhana – staghorn sumac-aka Rhus venenata page from the Anacardiaceae family. He describes how this remedy helped a baby a lot but not completely. He then explains how he gave a course of (HDT) of hydrocortisone and Poly vaccine with Sulphur as a case opener and the Rhus venenata as the Saturday remedy and the eczema disappeared. Now this information is so useful to those of us who have learned Ton’s Homeopathic Detox Therapy (HDT) from reading his book and then going on to study with him for the basic course and the Master courses. These are being held all over Europe now. This is what I did. If you wish to know more about this you will have to read his book ‘Fighting Fire with Fire’ which I reviewed for Hpathy.com October 2016 and can be found at: https://hpathy.com/book-reviews/fighting-fire-fire-homeopathic-detox-therapy-ton-janson-reviewed-rochelle-marsden/
At the end of the book there is a superb Index encompassing not only all the plant families but also every reference to a disease name or a remedy mentioned in this book. This means you can look up your patient’s condition e.g. diabetes, and then find all the places in which Ton has mentioned this. In this case there are 13 pages you can go to. This makes it such a useful resource. I have patient with Urticaria at the moment. Urtica Urens has helped a little but by finding Urticaria in the Index I will now look for other remedies which may be more useful and will read all the cases given for inspiration.
So who do I recommend this book for? Certainly all of Ton’s detox students who wish to read short case information on how he has used a plant remedy successfully for his patients. For those who wish to compare Ton’s vignettes on plant remedies against those other Plant MM books that have appeared lately. For those, like myself who like to read a keynote of a remedy rather than the whole proving, if there is one, and are looking for a differential diagnosis between similar remedies! Lastly, I would also recommend it as a coffee table book as it is so beautiful to look at and flick through!