Homeopathy Papers

Commentaries on Some Mistakes in the German-English Translations of Three Organons

organon

Dr. Arnoldo Rivera and Evelyn Aron present their findings of errors in three translations of Organon. The translations are the ones by William Boericke, Jost Künzli, Alain Naudé and Peter Pendleton and Steven Decker.

The mistakes are found in these books

  1. Organon Of Medicine, Sixth Edition, By Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, Translated By William Boericke, M.D.
  2. Organon Of Medicine, Sixth Edition, By Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, Translated By Jost Künzli, M.D. , Alain Naudé And Peter Pendleton.
  3. Organon Of The Medical Art, Sixth Edition, By Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, Translated By Steven Decker, Annotated By Wenda Brewster O’Reilly, PhD.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT: I thank my patient, Evelyn Aron (a translator and English teacher), who kindly revised the English text of the present work.

The dictionary says that to revise means “to look over again, in order to correct or improve something. This meaning defines exactly what Evelyn did. Since she is a follower of Homeopathy and other natural types of medicine. When I told her about this work, she immediately said that she wanted to professionally collaborate on this project by proofreading the English version. Thanks, Evelyn, for your great collaboration.

C O N T E N T S

Introduction

Part 1. Translation mistakes in the book Organon of Medicine, translated by William Boericke, M.D, and their corrections.

Part 2. Translation mistakes in the book Organon of Medicine, translated by Jost Künzli, M.D., Alain Naudé and Peter Pendleton, and their corrections

Part 3. Translation mistakes  in the book Organon of the Medical Art, translated by Steven Decker,  and their corrections.

Commentaries on some words included in the Glossary to the Organon of the Medical Art, written by Wenda Brewster, PhD.

Conclusions

  • Appendix A
  • Appendix B
  • Appendix C

I N T R O D U C T I O N

Organon der Heilkunst, Letzte und 6. Auflage, by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann was initially published in English by William Boericke, M.D. It contains many translation mistakes. For many decades, nobody tried to correct them. Then, two more translations appeared (Künzli, Naudé, Pendleton’s and Decker’s) which corrected Dudgeon-Boericke’s mistakes but unfortunately introduced other important ones.

I wrote the present article with  commentaries on what I consider to be mistakes of translation in all these works and the corrections that I think are appropriate, in order to incite the homeopaths, homeopathic associations, homeopathic editors, etc., to publish a better translation, or at least one that does not contain any of the mistakes here listed and to help those who already have any of these books to clarify Dr. Samuel Hahnemann’s teachings. It is incredible and dishonorable that Homeopathy, being one of the most (if not the most) important sciences that humanity has to help sick people, does not have a trustworthy translation of its fundamental work, Organon der Heilkunst, into English, the most extended language in the world.

In the present article, I only list the most important mistakes of the 3 mentioned translations and their corrections. I think that Boericke’s translation (based on Dudgeon’s translation of the fifth edition of Organon der Heilkunst) will, after corrected, be the one that more accurately transmits Dr. Hahnemann’s teachings. Starting from the Organon of Medicine, sixth edition, by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, translated by William Boericke, M.D., 46th impression: 2015, published by Kuldeep Jain for B. Jain Publishers (P) LTD, I elaborated a version in which all the mistakes I could find were corrected. It is ready to be used by anybody who, with the corresponding legal permission, wishes to work pro Homeopathy by publishing a new corrected version of Boericke’s work. Anyone can freely make use of my work to undertake this task. Some months ago, I sent my work to BJAIN Group. Supposedly, they are considering it. They have not answered yet.

Dr. J. Arnoldo Rivera E.
Cuernavaca, Morelos
México

Part 1. 

The most important mistakes in the German into English translation  of the book Organon of Medicine, Sixth edition, by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, translated by William Boericke, M.D., (based on Dudgeon’s translation of the fifth edition of Organon Der Heilkunst), 46th printing: 2015, published by Kuldeep Jain for B. Jain Publishers (P) LTD., and their corrections, are as follows:

  • Page XXX, Par. 161, line 3, says: “occur during a period of several days, from time to time”. It should say: “can appear at the end of the treatment” (please read Paragraph 161, page 165, where it says: “can appear at the end of the treatment”). Dr. Hahnemann wrote: können dann nur zu Ende solcher curen zum Vorscheine kommen, which means: “can appear at the end of the treatment”.
  • Page 15, line 15, says: “principle”. It should say: “substance”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Stoff, which means: “substance, matter”.
  • Page 35, 4th line before the last one, says, “accompanied with Psora”. It should say: “if Psora does not hinder”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: wenn Psora nicht hindert, which means: “if Psora does not hinder”.
  • Page 62, Par. 14, line 2, says: “no visible”. It should say: “no invisible”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: nichts unsichtbarer, which means: “no invisible”.
  • Page 63, Par. 16, line 7, says: “alternative”. It should say: “alterative”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Umstimmungs, which means: capable of producing changes (that is: “alterative”).
  • Page 64. Par. 18. Line 2, says: “modalities”. It should say: “circumstances”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Umstände, which means: “circumstances”. The word: “modality”, in Homeopathy refers to a special quality of a symptom (for example: a burning pain, nausea before the menses, pain ameliorated by motion, etc.). In this Par. 18, Dr. Hahnemann is referring to the circumstances that he mentions in Par. 5.
  • Page 64, Par. 18, line 5, says: “conditions”. It should say: “circumstances”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Umstände, which means: circumstances.
  • Page 65, Par. 21, line 1, says: “principle”. It should say: “essence”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Wesen, which means: essence.
  • Page 67, line 17, says: “depression”. It should say: “perturbation or disturbance”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Verstimmung, which means: distunement, disturbance, disorder, imbalance, untunement.
  • Page 67, line 22, says: “depressed”. It should say: “disturbed”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: verstimmte, which means: distuned, disturbed, disordered, unbalanced, untuned.
  • Page 68, Par. 24, line 4. After the comma that is after the word “disease”, the following text was omitted: “with regard for the originating cause (when it is known) and for the accessory circumstances”. Then the text continues normally. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: unter Hinsicht auf die EntstehungsUrsache, wenn sie bekannt ist, und auf die Neben-Umstände, which means: with regard for the originating cause, when it is known, and for the accessory circumstances.
  • Page 76. Lines 10, 14 and 15. The word “small” should be eliminated from the compound word: “smallpox”.   Hahnemann only wrote: pocken. Then, only the word “pox” should remain.
  • Page 80. Line 3,says: “psoric”. It should say: “infected with itch”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Krätzig (from the word: Krätze, which means scabies or itch). Here Dr. Hahnemann is not referring to the complete Psora but only to its external cutaneous manifestation.
  • Page 80. Line 6,says: “psoric”. It should say: “itch”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Krätz, which means: itch.
  • Page 80. Line 8,says : “Psora”. It should say: “itch”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Krätze, which  means: itch.
  • Page 81. Note 1. Line 6,says: “Psora”. It should say: “itch”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Krätze, which means: itch.
  • Page 84. Line 5,says: “peculiarity”. It should say: “unity”.   Hahnemann wrote: Einheit, which means: unity
  • Page 89. Note 1,says: “And the exanthematous contagious principle”. It should say: “And the mentioned exanthematous contagium”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: und den obgenannten Hautausschlags Zunder. The word Zunder means: “detonator”. Here, in a medical book, it can be translated as “contagium”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write here any word meaning: “principle”. Dr. Dudgeon himself translated the word Zunder as “contagion”, in the second line of the last paragraph of page 85 (Remember that Boericke´s translation of the 6th edition of the Organon is based on Dudgeon´s translation of the fifth edition.)
  • Page 92. Par. 56. Line 1,says: “enantipathic”. It should say: “enantiopathic”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: enantiopathischen.
  • Page 93. Note 1. Line 3, says: “contagious principle”. It should say: “miasm”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Miasm. He wrote a book on the miasmatic nature of chronic diseases. It is necessary to preserve the term “miasm” in order to understand Hahnemann´s teachings.
  • Page 93. Note 1. Line 4,says: “virus”. It should say: “miasm”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Miasm. See point XX.
  • Page 93. Note 1. Line 6, says: “simillimum”. It should say: “simillimo”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Simillimo.
  • Page 108. Par. 70. Line 10,says: “principle”. It should say: “substance”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Stoff, which means matter or substance.
  • Page 109. The last line,says: “new”. It should say: “old”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: alte, which means: old.
  • Page 111. Par. 73 Line 6,says: “physical”. It should say: “psychical”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: psychische, which  means: psychical.
  • Page 117. Par. 80. Last line of the Par. (not of the page). It says: “peculiar”. It should say: “particular”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: eigen, which means both: peculiar or particular. Here Dr. Hahnemann is not speaking of the peculiarity of the forms of disease which figure in systematic works on pathology, but of the particularity or independence or isolation of these forms of disease which were considered by physicians, before the discovery of Psora, as particular, independent diseases.
  • Page 118. Line 4, says: “ideopathic”. It should say: “particular”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: eigenartige, which means: particular.
  • Page 123. Par. 88. Line 2,says: “facts”. It should say: “parts”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Theilen, which means: parts.
  • 130. Line 17, says: “contagious principle”. It should say: “infectious contagium”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote:
    1. Anteckungszunder. Ansteckungs means: infection or
  • contagion, and Zunder is something that incites or detonates. Zunder was translated by Dr. Dudgeon as “contagion” in line 2 of the last paragraph of page 85.
  • Page 140. Line 6. Please eliminate the word “healthy”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it and it is not congruent with the text because Dr. Hahnemann is speaking about some substances that apparently only act over some (healthy) idiosyncrasies, but that certainly can also act on sick persons suffering from similar symptoms to those produced by these substances on certain idiosyncrasies. Please, read attentively Par. 117
  • Page 145. Par. 129. Line 3, says: “alternation”. It should say: “alteration”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Veränderungen, which means: alterations, changes, modifications.
  • Page 148. Par. 134. Line 3, says: “alternation”. It should say: “alteration”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Veränderung, which means: alteration, change, modification.
  • Page 158. Par. 152. Line 7, says: “separate”. It should say: “singular”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: einzeln, which means:
  • Page 165. Par. 161. Line 11. After the word: “modified”, please add a number 1 to indicate the note to this Par. It was omitted; I have restored it in point XXXV.
  • Page 165. Par. 161. The note to this Par. was omitted. I am restoring it here: “if the doses of the best-dynamized medicine (Par 270) are small enough and each dose is again modified by succussion, then even medicines of long action can be repeated after short intervals, even in chronic diseases.”
  • Page 178. Line 1. Between the words: “acute” and “disease”, please add the word: “local”, in order to read: “acute, local disease”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: acute LocalUebel.
  • Page 184. Note 1. Line 5. Please eliminate the word: “dynamic”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 186. Par. 208. Last line of this Par. Please add the word: “psychically” between the words “be” and “directed”, in order to read: “be psychically directed”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: psychisch, which means: psychically.
  • Page 191. Par. 220. Line 1. Please add a number 1 to indicate note 1, which was omitted. I restored it in point XLI.
  • Page 191. Par.220. Line 7. After the word: “antipsoric”, add a comma and the abbreviation: “etc.”, so that we can read: “antipsoric, etc. remedies”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: s.w., which means: etc.
  • Page 191. Par. 220. Note 1 was omitted. It should say: “These mental states appear in periodical alternation, e.g. several days of stormy insanity or rage are followed by quiet depression or the mental state only reappears in certain months of the year.”
  • Page 196. Par. 230. Line. 10. Please, between the word “improvement” and the word “in”, add the following text:  “is frequently produced by the smallest possible doses.” Here Dr. Hahnemann wrote: sind oft die kleinstmöglichen Gaben……. hervorzubringen, which  means: is frequently produced by the smallest possible doses.
  • Page 201. Par. 238. Third line before the bottom of the page. To the word “noxious”, I added: “ness”, in order to say: “noxiousness”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Schädlichkeit, which means: noxiousness. Indeed, Dudgeon-Boericke’s translation says: “noxious principle”, but Dr. Hahnemann did not write any German word meaning “principle”.
  • Page 201. Second line before the bottom of the page. I eliminated the word: “principle”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write any German word meaning principle.
  • Page 206. Note 1. Line 5. Please eliminate the expression: “LM”. Although nowadays this expression is correctly used, it does not exist in Hahnemann´s original Organon.
  • Page 206. Note 1. Last line of the note. Please eliminate the expression: “i.e. LM/1”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 207. Par: 248. Line 3, says: “increasingly”. It should say: “each time higher”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: steigend, which  means: to augment or to raise. In Par. 281 of his original work, almost at the end of the paragraph, Dr. Hahnemann also utilized this word steigend, to teach how to heighten the potency of the remedy, in patients who are not too excitable. Dr. Hahnemann always taught to raise the subsequent doses through succussion or stirring, not to augment the size or quantity of these doses. He speaks of giving large doses only when the initial external signs of the 3 chronic miasms (itch, fig-warts, chancre) are still present. The word “increasingly” makes us think, more probably, of an augmentation in the size of the doses, than an augmentation of the potency.
  • Page 211. Note 1. Line 9, says: “the lowest dilutions”. It should say: “the higher Dynamizations”, or better still, it should only say, “higher dynamization” (without the article “the”); in this way it becomes more grammatically correct. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: der höheren Dynamisationen, which means: the higher dynamizations.
  • Page 212. Par. 254. Line 1,says: “The other new or increased”. It should only say: “The remaining new”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Die übrigen neuen, which means: The remaining new.
  • Page 216. Par. 264. Line 1. After the word: “genuine”, please add: “full-potency”. These words were omitted.
  • Page 216. Par. 265. Last line: Eliminate “himself” and please write: “his own hands”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: aus seinen eignen Händen.
  • Page 216. Par. 265. Last Line. At the end of the line. Please add a number “1”, to indicate note 1 of this paragraph.
  • Page 216. After Par. 265, please add its note that was omitted. It says: “Because of this transcendent, fundamental principle that my doctrine proclaims, I have suffered many persecutions since just after its discovery.”
  • Page 220. Line 1, says: “bodies”. It should say: “substances”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Körper, which means: bodies, materials, substances. One usually says: natural substances, not natural bodies.
  • Page 220. Line 6, says “rubbing”. It should say: triturating. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Reiben, which means: rubbing. MerriamWebster´s Collegiate Dictionary says: “triturate: to pulverize and comminute thoroughly by rubbing”. This German word was translated as “trituration” in note 1 of Par. 269 and in other parts.
  • Page 220. Note 1. Line 7,says: “capable of”. It should say: “produced through”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote. durch…. erzeugt, which means: produced through.
  • Page 221. Note 4. Line 4,says: “rubbing”. It should say: “triturating”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Reiben, which means: rubbing. To triturate is to pulverize and comminute  thoroughly by rubbing or grinding.
  • Page 221. Par 270. Line 5. Please eliminate: “(3c potency)”. Dr. Hahmemann did not write it.
  • Page 221. Par. 270. Line 6. Please eliminate: “(b)”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 221. Par. 270. Line 8. Please eliminate: “(this is the LM/0)”. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 221. Par 270. Line 12. Please eliminate: “(LM/1)”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write: LM/.
  • Page 222. Line 1. Please eliminate: “LM/”, and only leave the roman numeral “I.” so that the text says: “the sign of I degree of…”
  • Page 222. Line 9. Please eliminate the parenthesis of: “(II)” and leave only the roman numeral “II”.   Also eliminate: “(LM/2)”, since Dr. Hahnemann did not write it. Thus, this line will say: “and given the sign II of the second potency.”
  • Page 222. Lines 10 and 11. Please eliminate: “the twentyninth (LM/29) is reached. Then… “ Instead of this text that begins with the word “the” and ends with the word “Then”, it should say: “with a dissolved globule of the XXIX potency.” Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Ein aufgelöstes Kügelchen XXIX, which  means: one dissolved globule of the XXIX.
  • Page 222. Line 13. Please, instead of: “thirtieth” write: XXX. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: XXX. In this line 13, also please, eliminate: “(LM/30)”, since Dr. Hahnemann did not write it, although it is correct.
  • Page 222. Line 17,says: “forcibly”. It should say: “properly”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: treffend, which means: precise, accurate.
  • Page 223. Note 1. Line 15. After the word: “minutes”, add: “and again scraping for 3-4 minutes”. Then the text continues as it is. Dr. Hahnemann wrote here: und 3,4 Minuten lang aufscharrt, which means: and again scraping for 3-4 minutes.
  • 223. Note 1. Line 16. After the word : “minutes”, please add: “and again scraping for 3-4 minutes and finally, to conclude, the last trituration is done for 6-7 minutes. Then the text continues  normally. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: scharrt während etwa 3,4 Minuten zusammen und schliest endlich mit der letzten, 6,7 minütlichen Reibung, which  means: continue scraping for 3-4 minutes and finally, to conclude, the last trituration is done  for 6-7 minutes.
  • 223 note 1. Line 19. Please eliminate: “(1c potency)”, since Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 223. Note 1. Line 20. Please eliminate: “(2c potency)”, since Dr. Hahenmann did not write it.
  • Page 223. Line 26. Please eliminate: “(2c potency)” , since Dr.Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 223. Line 27. Please eliminate: “(3c potency)”, since Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 223. Line 27. Please eliminate: “(1)”. and write: “(I)” Dr. Hahnemann wrote: (I). After writing “(I)”, please add: “is obtained”. In this way the text will be clearer.
  • Page 223. Lines 31 and 32. Please eliminate: “(1c potency)”, since Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 223. Line 32. Please eliminate: “(2c potency)”, since Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 223. Line 33. Please eliminate : “( 3c potency)”, since Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 224. Note 6. Line 11, says: “disproportionate”. It should say: “notable or enormous or incomparable”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: ungleich, which means: incomparable,   The word:  disproportionate” means: “out of proportion”. This is not what Dr. Hahnemann is trying to say.
  • Page 224. Note 6. Line 19. Please eliminate: “LM”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 224. Note 7. Line 2. Please eliminate “(LM)”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 225. Line 3. Please eliminate: “(LM potency)”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 225. Line 5. Please eliminate: “(LM/30)”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 225. Par. 271. Line 5,says: “few”. It should say: “two”. Hahnemann wrote: etwa ein Paar, which  means: approximately one pair.
  • Page 226. Line 3,says: “stirred”. It should say: “succussed”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: geschüttelt, which means: succussed.
  • Page 228. Par. 275. Line 10. Please eliminate: “which it attacks”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.
  • Page 232. Note 1. Line 2, says: “augment”. This word suggests that the size or quantity of the doses should be augmented. Dr. Hahnemann did not gradually augment the size of doses. He gradually raised the potency of the subsequent doses. So, instead of “augment” it should say: “raise”. Here Dr. Hahnemann wrote: verstärken, which  means both: to augment or to intensify. We need to remember that, especially in chronic diseases, Dr. Hahnemann used to prescribe only one teaspoonful daily or every second day, always  raising the potency of the doses by succussion or at least through stirring.  In acute diseases the doses should be given more frequently according to the gravity of the case, but Dr. Hahnemann did not use to give 2, 3,4, or more spoonfuls together. Only when the external signs of Psora, Syhilis or sycosis were present did he advise the use of large doses.
  • Page 233. Line 10, says: “inimical principle”. It should only say: “enemy. Dr. Hahnemann did not write any word meaning: “principle”. He only wrote: feindlich, which relates to an enemy.
  • Page 234. The last line says: “deformed”. It should say: “damaged”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: verkrüppelte, which means: damaged, lamed, crippled.
  • Page 235. Line 6, says: “more important for life and health”. It should say: “in more important places of the body for life and health”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: auf einer andern Stelle der Körpers …..wichtiger für Leben und Wohlseyn, which means: in more important places of the body for life and health.

Part 2. 

The most important mistakes in the German into English translation of  the book Organon of  Medicine, by Samuel Hahnemann,  Sixth Edition,  Translated By Jost Künsli, M.D., Alain Naudé and Peter Pendleton, Published by Cooper Publishing, 1982, and their corrections, are  as follows:  Before listing the mistakes and corrections  I need to say that the preface to the sixth edition and the long introduction, both written by Dr. Hahnemann, were omitted in this publication. See Appendix A.

  • Page 10. Par. 3 line 12,says: “character”. It should say: “mode of action” Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Wirkungsart, which  means: mode of action. The word “character” is also frequently used in homeopathy, but the expression “mode of action” is the correct one.
  • Page 12. Line 12, says: “understand”. It should say: “ascertain”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: erfahren, which means: to ascertain, to investigate. The word “understand” is an acceptable translation, but “ascertain” is more precise.
  • Page 26. Par. 24. Line 8, says: “exciting”. It should say: “originating”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Entstehungs, which means: “origins”.
  • Page 44. Line 26, says:  “secondary infectious agent”. It should say: “accessory miasm”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Neben-Miasm, which means: “accessory miasm”. Remember that Dr. Hahnemann wrote a work on the miasmatic nature of chronic diseases. So, if he, here, wrote: Miasm, it is preferable to translate this word as “miasm”, in order to be congruent with his literature.
  • Page 94. Par 102. Lines 8 and 9, say: “in the circumstances”. It should say: “at least in this combination”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: wenigstens in dieser Verbindung, which means: at least in this combination.
  • Page 110. Par. 125. Note b. Line 2, says: “and”. It should say: “or”. Hahnemann wrote: oder, which  means: or. In this way, Hahnemann’s idea is better understood.
  • Page 111. Par. 128. The last line says: “shaken”. It should say: “mixed”. “Shaken” is the same as succussion. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: zusammenggeschüttelt, which means: mixed. For shaking or succussion he used the word: schütteln.
  • Page 129. Par. 161. Line 12, says: “increased”. It should say: “heightened” or “raised”.  Hahnemann wrote: erhöheten, which  means: to heighten, raise. The word “increase” suggests an augmentation  of the size or quantity of the dose. Dr. Hahnemann used to elevate the potency but not the size of the doses. Only when the external signs of Psora, syphilis or sycosis were still present, he advised to employ large doses. Dr. Hahnemann used to indicate tea or coffee spoonful doses of medicine; generally one spoonful daily or every second day  in chronic patients, or more frequently in acute cases. He never used to indicate 2,3,4 or more tea or coffee spoonfuls together as a dose.

The note in page 195 of this translation (Künzli, Naudé and Pendleton) referring to the augmentation of the size of the doses when chronic, local, pathological signs of disease persist, was not written by Dr. Hahnemann, but by Richard Haehl, as Wenda Brewster informs us in the book, Organon of the Medical Art, page 278. By not understanding Hahnemann’s teaching on the raising of the potency of medicines and not of the quantity of the doses, Dr. Luc De Schepper, in his book Achieving and Maintaining the Simillimum, page 29, line 14, and also Nicola Henriques (a British homeopath), in her book, Crossroads to Cure, page 121, line 19, wrote about an augmentation of the size of the doses.

  • Page 163. Par. 235. Line 9, says: “successive”. It should say: “alternating”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Wechsel, which means: alternating. The word “successive” is not totally incorrect, but Dr. Hahnemann refers here to pathological states that not only appear one after the other successively, but to pathological states that recurrently alternate.
  • Page 164. Line 1, says: “successive”. It should say: “alternating”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Wechsel, which means: alternating. See point IX.
  • Page 173. Paragraph 248. Line 4, says  “increasing”. It should say: “heightening” or “raising”.  Hahnemann wrote: steigend, which  means: to augment or to increase, to heighten, to raise. If we read: “increasing”, it is easier to think that the quantity or size of the dose should be augmented.  Dr. Hahnemann always taught to heighten or to raise the potency of the doses when they need to be repeated, through succussion, or at least through stirring, but not to augment the quantity of the doses. See point VIII and point XXII, for further explanation.
  • Page 175. Line 3. Please eliminate: “after stirring it vigorously”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write this phrase. The existence of this phrase here is not correct or appropriate, because the solution has just been stirred previously (See the penultimate line of page 174).
  • Page 188. Line 8, says: “bodies”. It should preferably say: “substances”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Körper, which  means: bodies, substances. I think that “substances”  is a clearer translation.
  • Page 189. Note c. Line 3, says: “bodies”. It should say: “substances”. See point XIII.
  • Page 196. Par. 271. Line 6, says: “few”. It should preferably say: “two”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: etwa ein Paar, which  means: “approximately one pair”. It can also say: approximately one pair.
  • Page 202. Par 279. Line 3, says: “though”. It should say: “if”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: wenn, which means: if. The word “though” alters Hahnemann’s idea.
  • Page 203. Par. 280. Lines 3. and 4,say: “increases”. It should say: “heightens” or “raises”. Hahnemann wrote: erhöhet, which  means: “heightens”. The word “increases” makes one  think of  an augmentation of the size or quantity of the dose. The word “heightens” refers to an augmentation of the potency. This is what Dr. Hahnemann usually used to do in his practice.
  • Page 203. Par. 280. Line 9, says: “increased”. It should say: “heightened” or “raised”. Hahnemann wrote: Erhöhung, which  means: raising, heightening.
  • 204. Line 7. Again, in this line it says: “increased”. It should say: “heightened” or “raised”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: erhöht, which means: heightened or raised. See points XVII and XVIII.
  • Page 204. Line 9, says: “doses are increased far more slowly”. It should say: doses are heightened or raised far less and more slowly. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Gaben…erhöht werden… weit weniger und langsamer, which  means: doses are heightened or raised far less and more slowly.
  • Page 204 lines 9 and 10. Please eliminate: “and by far smaller amounts”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write this phrase.
  • Page 204. Line 11, says: “increased”. It should say: “heightened” or “raised”. Dr, Hahnemann wrote: steigen, which means: to increase or to raise or to heighten. In this line Dr. Hahnemann is teaching about the way to raise or to heighten the potency of the doses in patients who are less sensitive, and to illustrate this point, he used the word steigen. Summarizing, I will say that if in page 204, line 11 of the translation I am commenting (Künzli, Naudé, Pendleton), Dr. Hahnemann used the word steigen to refer to the raising of the potency of medicines, we should apply the same meaning to the word steigen in paragraph 248, line 4.  See once more, point XI of this second part of my work. See also point XXI, where I advised to eliminate the phrase “and by far smaller amounts”, because Dr. Hahnemann did not write it.

Part 3.

The most important mistakes in the German into English translation  of the book Organon Of The Medical Art, By Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, translated by Steven Decker, Published by Birdcage Books, 1996, and their corrections, are as follows :

Before commenting on the mistakes I found in this translation, and their corrections, I need to say that in view of Evelyn Aron’s observation, I perceived a clear difference between the verb “to mistune” and the verb “to distune”. “To mistune” means to fail to tune correctly and “to distune” means to cause to be out of tune. The dictionary says that the prefix “mis” means bad, wrong (misdeed), and that the prefix “dis” means to deprive of a specified quality, rank, object. Although I recognize that, figuratively, the word “mistune” can also mean dissonance, gramatically, the word “distune” is the most appropriate, according to the aforementioned reasons, to refer to the perturbing action of diseases and medicines on the vital principle. Remember please that Dr. Hahnemann taught that medicines can cure because they have the faculty to unbalance the vital principle (or in other words, to cause the vital principle to be out of tune, but not to fail to tune it correctly). Dr. Hahnemann employed the word verstimmen, that should be translated as “distune”. To translate it as “mistune”, as Decker did, is a mistake. Before Evelyn told me about this difference, which I corroborated by checking the dictionary, I was considering these two verbs as synonymous. I think that Steven Decker, Wenda Brewster, and many readers, have also been doing the same. This verb (to mistune), and its conjugations and derivatives, are so frequently found throughout Decker’s translation, that it would be impossible to list them all. I advise readers to read: “to distune”, “distunes”, “distunement”, etc., every time they find the words: “to mistune”, “mistunes”, “mistunement”,etc. I need to say too, that since we do not really know if diseases are distunements, I prefer to call them alterations, derangements, etc., as Dr. Dudgeon and Dr. Boericke did. Künzli, Naudé and Pendleton chose words like “untune”, “untunement”, which are also correct.

List of mistakes and corrections:

  • Page 5. Line 2, says: “to …….differently tune”. It should say: “to……distune” (or to derange, to change, to alter, to modify). Dr. Hahnemann wrote umzustimmen, which certainly can be translated as “to differently tune”, but also as “to distune” (or to derange, to change, to alter, to modify) Although correctly translated, if the word umzustimmen is translated in this part of the text as “to differently tune”,  it is confusing, I think, because 3 lines below, referring to this same matter, the text says……”through similarity”. So, to say: “to differently tune……through similarity”, is not, I think, a clear expression. It is clearer to say: “to distune or to alter, to change, etc.……through similarity”. The text, then, would say: “For curing, homeopathy avails itself only of those medicines whose capacity to (dynamically) alter and distune (or derange, modify, etc) the condition it exactly knows and then it searches out the one medicine whose condition-altering powers (medicinal disease) are in a position to lift the natural disease at hand through similarity (similia simillibus).” In this part of the text, Dr. Dudgeon, referring to Homeopathy, says: “it employs for the cure only those medicines whose power of altering and deranging (dynamically) the health it knows accurately, and from these it selects one whose pathogenetic power (its medicinal disease) is capable of removing the natural disease in question by similarity (similia simillibus)…” Please, analyze the following  reflection: When one cures a patient, he/she becomes differently tuned in comparison to the attunement (or out of tune state) he used to have before he was cured. In this case, one can say that he has been transformed to a positive differently tuned state or to a healthy differently tuned state. In order to get this positive, healthy, differently tuned state, it was firstly needed to transform the state of the patient to a worse, negative, differently tuned state through the action of a homeopathic remedy (artificial medicinal disease, homeopathic aggravation). So, there are, at least, two differently tuned states, one positive and the other, negative.  This is why I say that the expression: “to differently tune”, is a vague, not well-defined expression. And this is, also, why I say that it is preferable to say: “to distune”, instead of: “to differently tune”. In this way, one is only referring to the negative transformation the vital principle needs to suffer through the simillimum in order to begin a reaction against it ; this reaction will  lead  the vital principle to a positive, healthy, differently tuned state. ,  Thus, the vagueness and unclearness of the expression “to differently tune”, which,  as we have just analyzed, comes from the  double possibility of it being  applied, at least, to both, positive and negative differently tuned states, is eliminated. By saying “to distune”, we understand more clearly that a disturbance (a similar one in this case) has to be produced first in order to cure a disease, than by saying “to differently tune”. This is why in line 2. of page 5 (Organon of the Medical Art), it says “alter”, and two lines below it says “altering powers”.  Please see point G of the Commentaries on some words included in the Glossary to the Organon of the Medical Art. This mistake, “to differently tune”, is also found in:
  • Page 37. Line 31, says: “to differently tune”. Here Dr. Hahnemann did not write anything. It should say: “to distune, or to , to alter, to change”,). So, the text in line 31 would say: “it does so in order to artificially distune, alter, etc. the instinctual…… “ Here Dr. Dudgeon wrote: “to effect an alteration in the instinctive” (instead of: “to differently tune the instinctual”), as Decker translated.
  • Page 37. Line 34, says: “it differently tunes the life force”. It should say: “It distunes (or alters, changes, deranges, modifies) the life force.” Dr. Hahnemann wrote: umzustimmen , which  can be translated as: alters, changes, deranges, etc. Here Dr. Dudgeon wrote: “alteration”.
  • Page Par. 19.Line 6, says: “to differently tune”. It should say: to distune (or to alter, to derange, to change, etc.). Dr. Hahnemann wrote: umzustimmen, which  means:  to distune (or to alter, to derange, etc.). Here, Dr. Dudgeon wrote: “altering”. Dr. Künzli and colls. wrote: “to alter”.
  • Page 73 . Line 1, says: “to differently tune”. It should say: “to distune” (or to alter, to derange, etc.). Here, Dr. Hahnemann wrote: umzustimmen, which  can be translated as: to distune, to alter, to derange. Dr. Dudgeon wrote: “altering”. Dr. Künzli and collaborators wrote: “to alter”.
  • Page 80. Line 1,says: “differently tuned”. It should say: “distuned” (or altered, deranged, etc.). Dr. Hahnemann wrote: umstimmen, which can be also translated by using the above mentioned words: altered, deranged, etc. Umstimmen also means: to change somebody´s mind. Here, Dr. Dudgeon wrote: “deranged”. Dr. Künzli and collaborators wrote: “to alter”.
  • Page 80. Line 3, says: “to differently tune”. It should say: to distune, to alter, etc. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: umzustimmen, that can be translated as: to alter, etc. Here Dr. Dudgeon wrote: “deranging”, Dr. Künzli and collaborators wrote: “to alter”.
  • Page 80. Note 33, continued. Line 1-2,says: “to differently tune”. It should say: to distune, to derange, etc. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: umzustimmen, which can be translated by using the above mentioned words. Here, Dr. Dudgeon wrote: “affecting”. Dr. Künzli and collaborators wrote: “to alter”.
  • Page 10. Note 4. Line 11,says: “itch diathesis”. It should only say: “itch”. Dr. Hahnemann only wrote: Krätz (from Krätze), which means: itch, scabies.
  • The following are the places where I also found this mistake:
    1. Page 10. Note 4. Line 21.
    1. Page 50. Line 6.
    2. Page 82. Par. 38. Lines 9. And 10. Here, there is a clear example of this mistake, because a diathesis cannot come to light; only its cutaneous manifestation, the external itch can do so.
    3. Page 85. Line 20.
    4. Page 86. Line 4.
    5. Page 86. Par. 40. Lines 9 and 12.
    6. Page 86. Note 40a. Line 6.
    7. Page 88. Line 18.
    8. Page 94. Par. 50. Lines 4,8 and 14.
    9. Page 95. Line 7.
    10. Page 95. Par. 51. Line 14.
    11. Page 99. Line 32.
    12. Page 99. Line 34. Here, there is another clear example of this mistake, because one cannot take a sample from a diathesis to manufacture a nosode (in this case, Psorinum). One takes the sample from the cutaneous itch eruption.
    13. Page 136. Note 93. Line 8.
    14. Page 172. Note 160. Lines 4, 6 and 9.
    15. Page 187. Par. 203. Line 3. Here is another clear example of this mistake, because one cannot eradicate the itch diathesis from the skin using all kinds of salves (as the text says). One can only eradicate the external lesion, the itch eruption, through the application of all kinds of salves (as the text says).
    16. Page 190. Par. 204. Line 14.
    17. Page 191. Note 205b. Line 1.
    18. Page 253. Note 282. Line 5.
    19. Page 254. Note 282, continued. Line 3.
  • Page 14. Note 9. Line 1, says: “wasting sickness”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Siechthum. This German word refers more to a long disease than to a wasting disease. Please analyze the next commentary: a patient can suffer from a psoric chronic migraine, or a psoric chronic eczema, or a sycotic chronic asthma or a sycotic chronic arthritis, or from syphilitic chronic bone pains and none of these diseases is  necessarily  a wasting disease. So, I think that Dr. Dudgeon´s translation of the word Siechthum as “dyscrasia”, although probably not a perfect translation, is the best. If one does not wish to use the term “dyscrasia”, one can only say: chronic sickness, instead of wasting sickness. I found the following  phrase on the  Internet: nach jahre langen Siechthum, which  means: after years of lingering illness. I also found the following  sentence: der Tod erlöste sie von ihrem langen Siechtum, which  means: Death freed her from her long  The word “dyscrasia” refers to a deep unbalanced health condition that can or cannot be a wasting condition, but which always requires a long time for its development. In other words, to translate the word Siechthum as a “wasting disease”, is not a correct translation. “Dyscrasia” or “chronic disease”, or “long, chronic disease”, are better translations.
  • In the following lines I list the places where I also found this mistake (wasting) in the book Organon of the Medical Art.
    1. Page 17. Line 18.
    2. Page 20. Line 20.
    3. Page 23. Note 16. Line 5 and 7.
    4. Page 24. Note 16, continued. Line 1.
    5. Page 31. Note 23. Line 6.
    6. Page 32. Lines 8 and 13.
    7. Page 34. Line 17.
    8. Page 35. Note 26. Line 3.
    9. Page 39. Line 18.
    10. Page 40. Lines 4 and 5.
    11. Page 61. Par. 5. Lines 3 and 5.
    12. Page 88. Lines 19 and 23.
    13. Page 124. Par. 79. Last line of the Par.
    14. Page 124. Par 80. Line 4.
    15. Page 140. Par 103. Lines 1,3, and 11. Page 141. Line 2
    16. Page 162. Par. 145 Line 5.
    17. Page 168. Par. 149. Lines 1 and 3.
    18. Page 173. Par. 161. Line 6.
    19. Page 190. Par. 204. Line 4.
    20. Page 201. Note 222. Line 2.
    21. Page 211. Lines 28 and 29.
    22. Page 249. Note 276b. Line 3.
    23. Page 250. Note 276b, continued. Line 6.
  • Page 61. par.5. line 3, says: ”factor”. In this paragraph, Dr. Boericke wrote “points”, Dr. Künzli and collaborators, “phases”, and Dr. Pierre Schmidt also wrote “phases”. Although “factors”, “points” and “phases” are acceptable translations, I think that it should say moments, because here, in par. 5, Dr. Hahnemann wrote the German word “momente”, which means “moments”, and because by using this word (momente), he is referring to the characteristic Why do i think this way? please read the following texts:
  • The merriam-webster’s collegiate dictionary says that one of the meanings of the word moment is as follows: “a time of excellence or conspicuousness”; and it also says that excellent means “first- class” and that excellency is something of “outstanding quality”. About the word conspicuous the dictionary says: “something which attracts attention or is striking, noticeable”.
  • From the work on Chronic Diseases, Second Edition, first part, page 121, by Dr. Hahnemann, translated by Prof. Louis H. Tafel, I extracted the following lines referring to the work of a worthy homeopath: “and he should carefully find out in the work on Chronic Diseases, as well as in the work on Materia Medica Pura, a remedy covering in similarity, as far as possible, all the moments (“momente” wrote Dr. Hahnemann in German) or at least the most striking and peculiar ones, with its own peculiar symptoms;….
  • In Par. 153, The Organon Of The Medical Art it says: “…The more striking, exceptional, unusual, and odd (characteristic) signs and symptoms of the disease case are to be especially and almost solely kept in view.”
  • in his work: “Something Concerning Whooping Cough”, Dr. Böenninghausen, who was a contemporary of Dr. Hahnemann, says: “We must, therefore, especially take care not to be misled by indications of no moment, but should always strenuously keep in view the characteristics of every individual case”. In other words, Dr. Böenninghausen is saying that the indications of moment are the characteristic symptoms and the indications of no moment are the common symptoms.
  • In his work “the value of high potencies”, Dr. Böenninghausen says: “only with reference to aggravations and alleviations of symptoms according to time, position and circumstances, the higher and the lower potencies ever remain the same, and this constant uniformity ought to urge homeopaths to study these “momenta” with great industry, and to pay special attention to the same when selecting a remedy”.
  • Remember, please, that it is precisely in the aggravations and alleviations of symptoms according to time, position and circumstances, where homeopaths usually find the characteristic (or “moments”, as Dr. Hahnemann and Dr. Böenninghausen also called them, “Momente Or Momenta”.)
  • Page 68. Note 11 continued, 3rd paragraph, Line 5, says: “peristaltic”. It should say: “antiperistaltic”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote:
  • Page 70. Note 17a, says: “highest”. It should say: “gravest or most extreme”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: höchste, which means: the highest, the supreme, the maximum. Speaking about diseases, I think that “gravest” is the appropriate translation, not “highest”.
  • Page 76. Par. 26. Line 7 says: “mode”. It should say: “kind”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Art, which means both: mode or kind. In this case it should say: “kind”. Why? See the following illustrative example: Some of the symptoms of a pathogenic disease produced by Belladonna atropa are similar to those we find in scarlet fever, but both diseases are different in “kind” (as Dr. Dudgeon says), “nature” (as Dr. Künzli and collaborators say) or “d’espèce” (as Dr. Pierre Schmidt says in his translation of the Organon into French). So, in Par. 26, the text in parenthesis should say: “(while differing from it as to kind)”, instead of: “(while differing from it as to mode)”. This mistake is repeated in:  Page 89 Par. 45. Line 1, which says: “differing as to mode”. It should say: “differing as to kind”.
  • Page 77, in the antepenultimate line, says: “overtuned”. It should say: “overstrained”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmt. It is illogical to say that something can be over-tuned. If it were possible to over-tune something, the result would be a distunement and not an over-tunement. This is why, I think, Dr. Dudgeon preferred to say in this part of the note: “overstrained”. So in this line of the note it should say: “Only in this way was their self-disparagement over strained and lifted…”, in other words, German´s self-disparagement needed first to be overstrained (over-distuned, one could say, following Decker´s style of translation), so that they could react and recover their human dignity by lifting their self-disparagement. One can tune something that is distuned, but one cannot (if it were possible) over-tune anything because the result would be a distunement.  So, over-distuned would have been a better translation to be employed here (following Decker´s style of translation) than over-tuned. Over-tuned is an incorrect expression that meant to say: over-distuned. (See point XII).
  • Page 78. Par. 30. Line 2, says: “tuning”. It should say: “health”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Befinden, which means: health. Following Decker´s style of translation, the word “tuning” is not an incorrect translation, but the word “health” is the best.
  • Page 86. Note 40a. Penultimate line. It says: “antipsoric”. It should say: “anti-itch” or “anti-scabies”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Krätze heilenden Mitteln, which means: means to cure the itch.
  • Page 90. Line 2, says: “active similarity”. It should say: “similarity of action”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Wirkungs-Aehnlichkeit, which  means: similarity of action.
  • Page 90. Note 45b, says: “over-tuned”. Remember (See point VIII) that nothing can be over-tuned. It should say: “overpowered or overcome (as the other translators wrote). Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmt. The only translation I could find for the word: überstimmen is: to win by majority of votes; that is: to overcome or to overpower. Is it not more correct to say: “Just as the image of a lamp’s flame is rapidly overpowered and wiped away in the optic nerve by the stronger solar rays falling in our eyes…”, than to say: “Just as the image of a lamp’s flame is rapidly overtuned and wiped away in the optic nerve by the stronger solar rays falling in our eyes….”?
  • Page 110 Par. 68. Line 3,says: “over-tune”. It should say: “to overcome or to overpower”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmen. See points VIII and XII. In medical topics we usually say: Medicines overpower diseases (as Dr. Dudgeon translated) or medicines overcome diseases (as Dr. Künzli and collaborators translated). We do not say: Medicines overtune diseases (as Decker traslated). Besides, to interpret the term to over-tune as to impose a different tunement upon (as Wenda Brewster comments in her Glossary to the Organon of  the Medical Art, page 359, lines 10 to 12) is a recherché and forced interpretation that does not help the translation of the German word überstimmen into
  • Page 110. Note 67, continued, third line before the last one. It says: “over-tuned”. It should say: “overcome”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmt. See points VIII,XII and XIII.
  • Page 114. Line 13. It says: over-tuned. It should say: over-powered. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmt. See points VIII,XII and XIII.
  • Page 125. Note 80, continued. Line 5,says: “the collected”. It should say: “all”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: sämmlichen, which means: “The collected” means: gathered together. Dr. Hahnemann is teaching exactly the opposite: He is talking about isolated, individual diseases. Dr. Hahnemann is saying that before the discovery of Psora,  all chronic diseases were considered as separated, singular, isolated, individual, diseases. After the discovery of Psora, all these isolated, individual chronic diseases came to be considered only as parts of the enormous disease called Psora. The expression: “the collected” is also understood as “all”, but I think that the word “all” is clearer than “the collected”.
  • Page 125. Note 80, continued. Line 8,says: “peculiar”. It should say: “particular” or “singular”. In this note  Hahnemann is explaining that before the discovery of Psora, chronic diseases were considered as particular, singular, isolated, individual (or as Decker himself  translated in this same page 125, line 2.: “self-contained”) diseases. The word “peculiar” refers to: distinctive, special, characteristic, strange. So, the word “peculiar” does not apply in the context of this note.
  • Page 149. Lines 2, 3 and 4, say: “reciprocal”. It should say: “alternating”.
  • Hahnemann wrote: Wechsel, which means: alternating or reciprocal. The most common word for “reciprocal” in German is: Gegenseitig and for “reciprocity”: Gegenseitigkeit. As far as I know, the word “reciprocal” is not employed for pathological states that alternate nor for medicinal actions that alternate. With respect to  this mistake, see a wider explanation in point XXXIII.
  • Page 154. Par. 128. The penultimate line of this Par. says: “succussed”. It should say: “mixed”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: zusammengeschüttelt, which means: mixed. For “succussed” Dr. Hahnemann only used to say: schüttelt, not zusammengeschüttelt.
  • Page 155. Par. 131. The penultimate line of this Par. says: “reciprocal”. It should say: “alternating”. Dr. Hahenmann wrote: Wechsel, which means: alternating. It can also mean: reciprocal, but this term is inappropriate here. See points XVIII and XXXIII.
  • Page 159. Par. 141. Line 5,says: “employs”. Although it is a correct translation, there are other words, I think, that can be used to translate the word that Dr. Hahnemann wrote: anstellt;  for example: carries out, brings about, undertakes, performs, etc.
  • Page 167. Line 2, says: “over–tuned”. It should say: “overcome” or “overpowered” or overruled. Remember that nothing can be over-tuned. If it were possible to over-tune anything, what one would get would be a distunement. Over-tuned is an incorrect word that is trying to denote: “over-distuned”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmende. The only translation that I could find for this word is: to win by majority of votes. That is: overcome, to overpower, to overrule.
  • Page 172. Par. 160. Line 2,says: “over-tune”. It should say: “overcome” or “overpower”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmen. See explanation in points VIII, XII and XXII.
  • Page 172. Par. 160. Line 2,says: “overtune”. It should say: “overcome”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: überstimmen. See explanation in points VIII, XII and XXII.
  • Page 175. Par. 169. The penultimate linesays: “superior”. It should say: “best”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: vorzüglichern, which means: superior, excellent. I think that here the best translation is: best. The word “superior” is too literal a translation.
  • Page 183. Line 1,says: “constitution”. It should say: “condition”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Beschaffenheit, which means both: constitution and condition. The dictionary (Merriam-Webster´s Collegiate) says:
  • constitution: the structure, composition, physical makeup, or nature of something. Condition: a state of being. Here Dr. Hahnemann is speaking about a local suffering. Physicians check the condition (not the constitution) of a local suffering.
  • Page 183. Penultimate line of this page. Between the words: “acute” and “malady”, the word: “local”, was omitted. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: acute Local Uebel. It should say: acute local malady.
  • 191. Line 13 says: “eruption”. Although not an incorrect translation, I suggest to change it for: “irruption”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: ausbrüchen, which means: to break out, to emerge with some violence.
  • Page 208. Par. 231. Line 5, says: “reciprocal”. This word does not have its corresponding term in this part of the text of Dr. Hahnemann´s original. Translator Decker wrote it to try to make his translation clear, but it would have been better if he had written the word “alternating” instead of the word “reciprocal.
  • Page 208. Par. 232. Line 1,says: “intermittent”. It should say: “alternating”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: alternirenden.
  • Page 208. Note 232. Lines 2 and 3. say: “The following are examples of two reciprocal states alternating with one another.” This text is not contained in Dr. Hahnemann´s original. Translator Decker wrote it to try to make his translation clear, but, instead, he should only have written “The following are examples of two alternating states”, because Dr. Hahnemann called this kind of states alternirenden.
  • Page 208. Note 232. Line 9,says: “reciprocal”. It should say: “alternating”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Wechsel, which means: change, alternation. Dr. Hahnemann refers to this kind of diseases as: alternirenden Krankheiten (alternating diseases) in the first line of Par. 232.Translator Decker himself translated as “alternations, alternate, etc.”, German words related to the word: Wechsel, as you can see in the next examples:
  1. Page 52. Note 36. Line 11: “alternations”: abwechselungen.
  1. Page 86. Note 40a. Line 5. “Alternation”: abwechselung. Here the text refers to the alternation of antisyphilitic and anti-itch remedies.
  2. Page 200. Note 220. Line 1: “alternate”: abwechselnd. Here the text refers to mental and emotional states that alternate periodically.
  3. Page 208. Note 232. Line 1. “Alternate”: abwechselnd. Here the text says: three states may alternate with one another.
  4. Page 209. Note 232. Continued. Line 1: “alternate”: abwechselnd. Then, I ask, why did translator Decker not translate Wechsel-Zuständen as “alternating states” everywhere he wrote “reciprocal states”?

In addition:

  1. The other translators of the Organon (Dudgeon, Boericke, Künzlu, Naudé, Pendleton) translated Wenchsel-Zuständen as
  • “alternating states”.
    1. In the Barthel and Associates Repertory (a homeopathic repertory written in English, French and German), they also wrote: “alternating” (English) or “alternant” (French) when the word Wechsel is employed.
  • See the next examples extracted from this Repertory:
  • Mind:
  • Weeping/ pleurer/ weinen
  • alternating with cheerfulness alternant avec gaieté                                                                                                   abwechselnd mit Frohsinn                                                                   
  • Anxiety/anxieté/Angst   alternating with contentment                                                                                       alternant  avec contentement  abwechselnd mit Zufriedenheit                                                                             Generalities:  Side/Coté/Seite
  • alternating sides   alternants cotés  abwechselnde Seiten. See appendix B.
  • One of the meanings of the verb “reciprocate” that I found in the dictionary says: to move forward and backward alternately. This meaning could possibly explain why the word “reciprocal” can be utilized to translate the word Wechsel. Notwithstanding, please observe that in this definition the word alternately is employed to define the word “reciprocate”.
  • The most important reason to name as “alternating” (and not “reciprocal”) the diseases or states that alternate is that Dr. Hahnemann himself called them alternirenden in Par. 232, as I said at the beginning of this point XXXII.
  • This mistake (reciprocal) is also found in:
    1. Page 149. Lines 2 and 3.
    2. Page 155. Par. 130. Line 6.
    3. Page 155. Par. 131. Penultimate line.
    4. Page 208. Par. 231. Line 5
    5. Page 208. Note 232. Lines 2,9,18,21 and 23
    6. Page 210. Line 3.
    7. Page 211. Line 7.
    8. Page 224. Par. 251. Line 2.
    9. Page 224. Par. 252. Line 1.
  • Page 221. Lines 1 and 2,say: “then give the patient one or, ascendingly, several teaspoons of this.” Instead of the word: “ascendingly”, it should say: “each time higher”. If the word: “ascendingly”, is used, it is more probable that readers may think that the number of teaspoons is to be augmented. Dr. Hahnemann taught that the potency of the remedy should be heightened, not the number of teaspoons. In this part of the German text, Dr. Hahnemann wrote: steigend, which means: to augment or to raise. In Par.  281, almost at the end, Dr. Hahnemann also utilized this word steigend to teach how to heighten the potency of the remedy in patients who are not too excitable. As far as I know, Dr. Hahnemann used to prescribe, for chronic diseases, only one teaspoonful of the dissolved and succussed remedy every day or every second day; in acute diseases, teaspoonfuls should be given more frequently but not together at the same time. Only when the external local signs of the 3 chronic miasms were still present (itch eruption, chancre, condyloma), he used to prescribe large doses. So, in lines 1 and 2 of Page 221, it should say: “Then give the patient one  or, each time higher, several teaspoons of this. (So that readers can clearly perceive  Hahnemann´s idea about the increase of the potency of the next doses).
  • Page 222. Line 14,says: “audible”. Hahnemann wrote: laut, which means: high, noisy, sonorous. So, “audible”, is too literal a translation. I suggest: manifesting or prevailing, or prevalent. The text, then, would say: “is now prevailing (or manifesting or prevalent) almost all by itself.”
  • Page 236,says: “bodies”. It should say: “substances or materials”. Dr. Hahnemann wrote: Körpers, which means: “bodies, materials, substances”. In other parts of this Par. 269 and in its Note., Dr.
  • Hahnemann wrote: Substanz or substanzen, instead of Körper. We usually say: “natural substances” or “natural materials”. It is not common to say:
  • “natural bodies”.
  • Page 254. Par. 283. Line 5, says: “a more unfitting”. Dr. Hahnemann did not write the word: more. It should say: “an unfitting”.
  • Page 272. Par. 161. Line 2, says: “ensue from time to time over the course
  • of several days”. This is an abridgement of what Dr. Hahnemann wrote in his 5th It should say: “can only come to light at the end of such treatments”, (which is the translation of what Dr. Hahnemann wrote in his 6th edition: können dann nur zu Ende solcher Curen zum Vorscheine kommen.) See the last 4 lines of Par. 161 of Organon of the Medical Art.

Commentaries  On Some Of The Words Included In The Glossary To The Organon Of The Medical Art

  1. Page 321. Lines 1, 3, 6 and 14,say: “Itch diathesis”. To read a commentary about “itch diathesis”, please see, point II of the third part of this work, especially II-4, II-13 and II-16.
  2. Page 333,says: “Occasion. Veranlassung”. Here Wenda Brewster says (Lines 3 and 4), that the German word Veranlassung indicates neither excitation nor cause. Please analyze and combine the next observations:
    • The Langenscheidts Taschenwörterbuch says that Veranlassung means: occasion, cause, motive.
    • In Par. 7 of the Organon, Dr. Hahnemann says that veranlassende Ursache is a causa occassionalis.
    • In The Organon of the Medical Art, note 7a. point 1, translator Decker wrote: “remove from the room the strong smelling flowers that are arousing faintness and hysterical plights”. Here, Decker translated as “arousing” the German word erregenden that Dr. Hahnemann employed in this part of the original Organon.

“Arousing” also means “exciting or stimulating”, according to Merriam-Webster´s Collegiate Dictionary and the word erregen means to excite, to irritate, to cause, according to Langen-Scheidts Taschenwörterbuch.

So  if we take into account that the example of the strong flowers arousing faintness …. of this note 7a point 1, was written by Dr. Hahnemann to illustrate what he says in Par.  7 about veranlassende Ursache (causa occasionalis), then we have a basis to think that a veranlassende Ursache can also be considered as an arousing or exciting cause. Here the other translators of the Organon (Dudgeon-Boericke and Künzli, Naudé, Pendleton), translated veranlassende Ursache (Par. 7) as: exciting cause.

  1. In addition, in Par.73 (Organon of the Medical Art) Hahnemann says that epidemic diseases are not infrequently occasioned (Veranlassungen, wrote Dr. Hahnemann, which means occasions or occasional causes) and engendered (Erseugerinnen, which means “producers”, wrote Dr. Hahnemann) by the calamities of war, floods and famine. So, according to the explanations given above, the arousing or exciting calamities of war, floods and famine can be considered as exciting causes or arousing causes. This is, again, why in this part of Par. 73, that refers to epidemic diseases, the other translators wrote: wars, floods and famine are often the exciting causes or the breeders of such diseases (Künzli, Naudé, Pendleton) or: The  calamities of war, inundations and famine are not infrequently their exciting causes and producers  (Dudgeon-Boericke).
  2. In the theoretical part of the work on chronic diseases, also written by Dr. Hahnemann, translated from German into English by Prof. Louis H. Tafel, Dr. Hahnemann narrates a case where a hated husband was the occasional cause (Anlasse, , wrote Dr. Hahnemann) or exciting cause, (Erregungs-Ursache, wrote Dr. Hahnemann) that aroused or excited his wife´s Psora to advance from a latent to a developed state.

By carefully reading the section between the square parenthesis of Appendix C, both in English and in German, readers can easily conclude that the hated husband was the occasional cause (Anlasse), the exciting cause (Erregungs-Ursache) and the occasional external cause (Aussere Veranlassung) ( (See a photocopy of this case, both in English and German, in Appendix C of this work). This is one of the clearest examples that, at least to Dr. Hahnemann, a Veranlassung (occasion) or Anlasse (occasion) is an Erregungs-Ursache (exciting cause) and this is just the opposite of Wenda Brewster´s opinion about the word “occasion”.

  1. Page 321. “Itch diathesis”. Please see point II of the third part of this work, especially, II-4, II-13 and II-16.
  2. Page 341. Line 20. Here again it says: “itch diathesis”. Please see Point II of the third part of this work, especially II-4, II-13 and II-16.
  3. Page 343. All the section about the word “reciprocal” in this Glossary is incorr Please see, point XXXII of the third part of this work.
  4. Page 359. Lines 10 and 11, say: “over-tune”. It should say: “overdistune”. Uberstimmen. About this mistake please see, point VIII;, point XII and, point XXII, of the third part of this work. I can also add that the word überstimmt can be translated as: overpowered, overcome, over-strained or overruled. A strict selection of any of these meanings is needed to correctly transmit what Dr. Hahnemann wanted to say in the parts of the text where he used the word überstimmt. To always use the word “over-tune” (although in reality, it should say: “over-distune”) to translate the word uberstimmen is excessive and does not help the translation.  A clear example of this excess is found on page 167, lines 1, 2 and 3 of the Organon of the Medical Art. Here it says: If, as was said, the fittingly selected homeopathic medicine is properly employed, then the acute natural disease that is to be over-tuned passes away unnoticed. More correctly,  in the second part of this text it should say: Then the acute natural disease that is to be overcome (as Dr. Künzli and collaborators translated) passes away unnoticed or then the acute natural disease that is to be overruled (as Boericke’s translation says) passes away unnoticed. Here Dr. Hahnemann wrote: “Wird, wie gesagt, die passend ausgewählte, homöopathische Arznei gehörig angewendet so vergeht die zu überstimmende, acute, natürliche Krankheit.”     Is it not clearer to say:  “the acute natural disease that is to be overcome or overruled”, than “the acute natural disease that is to be overtuned”, as Decker translated? Please also see point XIII of the third part of this work.
  5. Page 359. Line 15,says: “Tune differently”. To the commentary expressed on, point I, of the third part of this work, about the expression: “to differently tune”, I can add that, to say: “to differently tune”, can also be confusing for the following reason: If one prescribes an enantiopathic or an isopathic remedy, one can also differently tune the patient´s Vital Principle. So, there are several ways of differently tuning the Vital Principle. By saying: “to differently tune”, one does not know which of these ways of tuning one is talking about. The expression: “to differently tune”, is then, to me, too vague and unclear. It should be substituted by the word:  “distune”.  See point I of the third part of this work.
  6. Page 359. “Tunement”. Stimmung. If one attentively analyzes this section related to the word “tunement”, one can perceive that in order to define the word: “mistunement” (although it should say “distunement”) (Verstimmung), Wenda Brewster used  the following  words: derangement, deranged, altered. To describe the word “over-tune” (although it should say “over-distune”), she used the word: “overpower”. These words: “derangement, deranged, altered and overpower”, are exactly the words that one finds (correctly selected and, so, avoiding confusions) in the other translations of the Organon (especially Dudgeon-Boericke´s) where words related to the German word stimmen were translated.
  7. Page 333. Section referring to the word “Occasion”. Lines 5. 6 and 7. Wenda Brewster says that: Hahnemann reserves the term “cause” (Ursache) primarily for the fundamental cause of disease. On the contrary, in my commentaries on the Glossary, letter B, points 2 and 5, one can observe that Dr. Hahnemann also used to employ the word Ursache to refer to an occasional cause (veranlassende Ursache) or to an exciting cause (Erregungs-Ursache).

C O N C L U S I O N S

  1. Boericke´s translation contains many mistakes and omissions not too difficult to be corrected.
  2. Künzli, Naudé, Pendleton´s translation contains few mistakes not too difficult to be corrected. The preface to the 6th edition and the Introduction were omitted by the translators.
  3. Decker´s translation contains many mistakes (most of them depending on an insufficient knowledge about Homeopathy’s fine details on the side of the translator and of whoever decided its publication.) Some of the mistakes are reiteratively found. A close analysis of some of them was needed to correct them.
  4. The 3 translations can be very useful if the mistakes and omissions they contain are corrected.
  5. I found that Boericke´s translation was the easiest to be corrected and the texts that were omitted were also easily incorporated, and since it contains the preface to the 6th Edition and the Introduction, it becomes the most recommendable.
  6. In my personal, totally corrected and completed Boericke´s translation, all printing mistakes have also been corrected.

A P PE N D I X    A

On Dr. Hahnemann’s Introduction to the Organon of the Healing Art (commonly named Organon of Medicine)

The preface and the Introduction that Dr. Hahnemann wrote to his 6th edition of the Organon of Medicine (omitted in Künzi, Naudé and Pendleton´s publication) are important due, at least, to the following  observations:

  1. Together, the preface and the Introduction, are a master- piece of the History of Medicine in Dr. Hahnemann´s times, written by a wise physician who studied and practiced his profession in that period. It is an extremely vivid and realistic description.
  2. Paragraph 1, its note and Paragraph 2 of the Organon of Medicine become more understandable and significant after reading its Preface and Introduction. These two paragraphs constitute an inflection point in the history and development of medicine. This inflection point is better understood by a close study of the Introduction that Dr. Hahnemann wrote to the Organon, which he titled: Review of the Therapeutics, Allopathy and Palliative Treatment that Have Hitherto Been Practiced in the Old School of Medicine.
  3. Hahnemann emphasizes his point of view about the dynamic origins and processes of disease and cure.
  4. Hahnemann mentions some moral and mental influences as causes of disease, emphasizing in this way his psycho-somatic point of view about disease and cure, joined to his dynamic theory about disease and cure.
  5. Hahnemann says that the primary and secondary symptoms of a disease come mixed together and that it is difficult to know which of them are primary and which are secondary symptoms.
  6. Hahnemann emphasizes the wanting of intelligence of the Vital principle or Vital Force, especially by saying that it cannot cure itself because it can not by itself and over itself produce a stronger, artificial, similar disease in order to  cure a natural disease.
  7. Hahnemann also emphasizes that the material body and the energetic Vital Principle constitute a Unity.
  8. Hahnemann mentions something about Isopathy.
  9. Hahenmann mentions the names of some physicians who had some slight notions about Homeopathy before the publication of the first edition of the Organon of Medicine, and gives them recognition.
  10. Hahnemann emphasizes that the enantiopathic palliative method never cures chronic diseases and that on the contrary, it aggravates them and sometimes makes them incurable.

About the author

Arnoldo Rivera

Arnoldo Rivera

Dr. Arnoldo Rivera is a Mexican Homeopath who was born in Sabinas Hidalgo, N.L., México in 1949. He studied at Escuela Nacional de Medicina y Homeopatía, in México City and also at Homeopatía de México, A.C. (an association offering education in classical homeopathy). He graduated in 1975 and has practiced since then. He believes that students of Homeopathy should first carefully study and analyze Hahnemann's works before going on to other authors' writings, in order to build for themselves a firm basis if this science which will help them not stray from its core.

About the author

Evelyn Aron

Evelyn Aron

Evelyn Aron was born in the U.S. and moved to Mexico City with her family when she was a child. She studied biology, literature and translation in Mexico and in California, where she also worked as a court interpreter and language instructor. Back in Mexico, she has worked as an English-Spanish translator, mostly in the public health field, an environmental educator (global warming and climate change) and a composer of children's songs. Evelyn and her family have been Dr. Rivera's patients for many years. Evelyn proof-read Dr. Rivera's English corrections of the Organon translations.

1 Comment

  • This was a very thorough investigative work. I was very surprised to see how many meaningful errors there were. It’s something everyone should consider.

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