Homeopathy Papers

If I think of Germany in the night – The syphilitic miasms

Written by Katja Schuett

Homeopath Katja Schütt explores the syphilitic miasm and its destructivness on the physical, mental and spiritually levels. She describes the hatred, desire for revenge and hopelessness that the miasm produces.

Night thoughts

If I think of Germany in the night,
my sleep won’t come or just be light,
I can no longer close my eyes,
and my hot tears, they flow and, fill the skies… [1]

Extreme right-wing terrorism, politically motivated violence and hate-crimes are a growing threat to Germany as in many other countries, with statistics showing an increase in Germany during the so-called “refugee crisis” in 2015/2016, when hundreds of thousands Syrians fled to Germany to escape war.

Recently (10/10/2019), a 27-year-old boy, intending to make a massacre with worldwide impact, carried out a terrorist attack on a Jewish synagogue in Halle/Germany, killing several people. The Jews he blamed for everything. Many Germans and especially those who have not forgotten the horror of the World War II, are shaken to the core and convinced that the sad history of the Nazi era must be prevented from being repeated. Policy and institutions struggle for an understanding of the crimes and to find adequate ways to counter that elusive threat. A threat that finds their breeding ground in the destructive syphilitic miasm as we homeopaths know from Hahnemann’s theory of the chronic diseases.

After years of investigating patients and their disease patterns Hahnemann found  that primal maladies were of a miasmatic, chronic nature and he established the theory of chronic diseases. He investigated the ways of suffering through group anamnesis and found that a variety of diseases were linked by a mutual background, thereby giving diseases a constitutional basis and the subject a predisposition towards certain diseases. Miasms show themselves in each aspect of the individual, altering the entire physical and psychical constitution and urging the subject to behave and live in certain ways. In disease, they find their expression in characteristic symptoms and patterns. Neither the healthiest diet nor lifestyle could cure them, not even in persons with the most robust constitution. Constituting a deep-rooted disease force that rules at the very foundation of the person’s body and mind, miasms continue to increase with the years until the end of life. Miasms can be inherited or acquired from contagion and get worse from suppression, which causes the miasm to develop further and more serious symptoms to occur. In Europe, Hahnemann found three of such miasms which he named Psora, Sycosis and Syphilis, with the main features of weakness and inhibition (psora), excess and overgrowth (sycosis), destruction and perversion (syphilis). Understanding the nature and dynamics of these disease patterns and the character of symptoms allows the homeopath to recognize the patient’s miasmatic state and what is behind the symptoms that is to be cured.

The syphilitic miasm – destruction, degeneration and deformity on all levels

The syphilitic miasm carries with it a mental, emotional and physical destructiveness of sheer enormity. Syphilitics show in their appearance asymmetries in the face, ears or elsewhere, with deformities of bones, birth defects or missing toes or fingers. Lips are thin and early hair loss is common. Caries of bones may show in the sunken nose bridge, and teeth may be serrated, missing, crack or crumble, or are irregular, not in the correct position. Early tooth decay with caries is common. The expression is emotionless, they don’t want to be talked to or looked at, and their hardened, cold-blooded look let‘s you feel their hate. Skin is cracked and ulcerated. They are sensitive to heat and cold and typically averse to meat.

The syphilitic subject has distorted ideas and a pessimistic view of life. They are usually depressed and often suicidal. They tend to isolate themselves and to keep their troubles to themselves, feeling alone and hopeless about them. Syphilitic persons can’t comprehend or remember anything because their mind is destroyed. They have nothing to say and if so, are unable to express themselves. Because of their weak mental power they forget what they were about to say and lose the meaning when reading. Syphilitics have few fears but fear being killed and threatened. They are physically insensitive.

Syphilitic children frequently look old and have a grayish skin and often some deformities. The baby cries as soon as he is born, especially at night, but cannot be consoled. They don’t like being held or touched, don’t smile and do not seem to need their mother. The mothers, when being syphilitic too, may have had several aborts, stillborn children, or bleeding during pregnancy. At school, syphilitic children have learning difficulties due to their lack of comprehension. They cannot concentrate and do not remember what they have learned. They don’t find any friends because of their inability to make contact and they sit alone, or show their aggressive tendencies by fighting with others. They prefer to play at fighting, shooting and playing dangerous games. With their innate feelings of hatred you can see these kids tramping on insects or snails and enjoying killing them. They like wearing dark colors like gray, brown and black, and later, in youth, they spend their time in dark clubs and at goth parties, pierced and tattooed with death’s heads, and wearing barb wires around their neck. They dress to shock and to hurt other’s feelings and often hurt themselves by self-mutilation, cutting or body piercing. I remember a little boy when being on vacation, who asked me for the tick that I had just removed from my dog. He said he wanted to be the one to kill the tick because he loved to see the blood splashing around. With the progression of the syphilitic miasm these early sadistic or masochistic tendencies will cause the most destructive symptoms to appear.

Having a fondness for aggression and violence, syphilitics prefer watching horror movies with lots of killing and shooting. Their desire to fight and kill is often fulfilled by choosing professions or hobbies that support their tendencies (butcher, surgeon…). They may even join the army voluntarily to kill other people without any feeling of compassion. Their desire for death also finds its expression in alcoholism, drug problems and addiction, which make them even more aggressive and slowly destroying themselves. Syphilitics mistrust people and expect everyone to be their enemy. This may drive them to kill others, even their own children. Feeling easily provoked, they react with extreme anger and violence.

Hate is always present, wherefore they use the word hate a lot. They hate  people, their life, job and family, and may become anarchists, assassins or serial killers due to their maliciousness. …There is only defiance, hate, hate, and again hate [2]… Hitler shouted with his murderous slogans, filling his speeches with hateful accusations and promises of revenge. As a syphilitic person he tended to react by counterattacking and fighting at each perceived provocation and promised …to destroy anybody who is against me. [3]. Brutality, cruelty, contemptuousness, madness, insanity, and ferocity, all indicate the  destructiveness of this miasm. War and genocides literally demonstrate an ultimate intensification of its destructive features with indescribable cruelties as happened in Rwanda in 1994 or the Holocaust from 1941-1945. Hitler had always expressed his love for war and is most remembered for his central leadership role in the rise of fascism in Europe. He constantly perceived threat, was insanely suspicious and suffered from persecution mania. One of his basic delusions was that Germany was surrounded by enemies and the Jews …a parasite in the body of other nations [4]. He had a strong tendency to blame others and fervently expressed his hatred and desire for revenge. His syphilitic delusions and inveterate antisemitism became the pillars of his ideology and made him capable of killing and destroying nations without feeling guilt or moral scruples.

Hitler feared infections and especially syphilis, in which he saw one of the greatest dangers to mankind. This made him obsessive with hand washing and always carrying a suitcase of medicine with him when travelling. He knew about the mental diseases in his family and was concerned about the questions of heredity and malformation, which lead him to promulgate the euthanasia program in Nazi Germany, systematically killing physically or mentally disabled and emotionally distraught people. Although Hitler himself hadn’t been infected with syphilis we can find strong traits of it in his family history – psychotic and mentally retarded family members, heavy drinkers, criminals, early death of children, severe depression etc. Hitler tried to make a secret of his ancestry as he wanted nobody to know where he came from.

In syphilitic patients the family history frequently reveals the signs of destructiveness, with early death and suicides, stillborn children, and birth defects affecting the most precious organs like kidneys, brain and heart, or genetic mutations such as Down`s syndrome. Destructiveness also shows in the family history with mental diseases such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, or they may suffer from Alzheimer‘s disease, Multiple Sclerosis or Parkinson‘s disease due to the destruction of the brain or nerve cells. Diseases of aging may also include destroyed function of memory such as dementia and advancing to mental paralysis. Autoimmune diseases, in which the person’s immune system attacks itself are syphilitic. As all diseases come with a destructive tendency, lung infections may be lethal, and there is a tendency to perforation in otitis media or appendicitis. Ailments such as sepsis, gangrene or necrosis may appear, and a corrosive, suppurative and bleeding tendency renders all ailments dangerous. Syphilitics die suddenly, at a relatively young age, although they may seem to be in good health for many years. Suppressive treatment measures and a lifestyle that is out of sync with nature account for the miasms to become stronger and complicated during the years of life.

Due to the inheritability of miasms it is also common to find people afflicted whose parents, grandparents and even more remote ancestors originally acquired the miasmatic infection. During the 18th and 19th century, syphilis was an extremely common disease, stigmatizing its victims and their families, who tried to hide the disease. The Old School had already discovered that syphilis is a constitutional pathological disease, but for centuries, syphilis was not differentiated from gonorrhea. It was Hahnemann who reached to single them out and characterize them as different miasmatic diseases that leave their lifelong traits in those who have been infected and in their offspring.

The syphilitic miasm is most active at night, from sunset to sunrise, and so ailments start or aggravate at twilight and make the syphilitic subject fear night. He gets easily depressed and more so at night, when he can’t sleep or has horrible dreams of murder and killing.  Brooding over his ailments he cannot fall asleep and tosses and turns restlessly. Thoughts of suicide or other destructive thoughts may come to mind. Syphilitics prefer to have sex in secret because of the shame. Their sexual expression is unnatural, perverted and destructive; they can have anal sex, sex with animals or incest, leading to birth defects. Sexual abuse, rape, or any sort of violent or harmful sex or sexual fantasies are common. Hiding is a central theme wherefore the syphilitic is secretive in many ways. The German Wolfgang P., who kidnapped Natascha Kampusch at the age of 10 and kept her hidden underground in secret for 8 years was strongly syphilitic. He demanded absolute obedience, felt easily provoked, and reacted with extreme anger and violence from a small provocation, beating and kicking her. He let her almost starve and molested her until she could finally manage to flee at the age of 18, when he went right away to the railway track to commit suicide by throwing himself before the train. He lived in isolation and was unable to connect with other people, capable of hiding his crime for so long even from his close family members who visited him regularly.

Every thought, feeling, creation, action or reaction mirrors the current miasmatic state of the individual. Great artists of all genres dealt with the emotional truth of mankind of their time and many of them gained the immortality they deserved by their creations, being capable of inspiring audiences and especially those who can deeply resonate with the expressed feelings. Franz Schubert said: My music is the product of my genius and my misery; and that which I have written in my greatest distress is that which the world seems to like best. [6] In art, syphilitics typically express themselves through a heavy tinge of melancholy, defeat and hopelessness. Many artists in the 18th and 19th century became victims of that dreaded disease, that caused many to die early, often from suicide, or to suffer from the aftermath of neurosyphilis. With psychiatric symptoms, loss of cognitive functioning and change in personality they often had to spend the rest of their lives in insane asylums, paralyzed, blind or deaf. Their families often destroyed their medical documents to keep the shameful secret, or dragged them away from publicity to preserve their fame and dignity. Anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, mania, despair, hallucinations and paranoid delusions tortured them and influenced their creations. One can feel the clouds always present in their works and becoming increasingly darker with the progress of the disease, until finally reflecting bleakness, despair and feelings of presentiment of death.

Some of the most famous composers of classical music of that time bear the signs of syphilitic mental deterioration like Franz Schubert. He was born in 1797 in Vienna/Austria and died in 1828 from syphilis. In 1823 syphilis was diagnosed when he suffered from severe mood swings, depression, periods of dark despair and violent anger, headaches and dizziness. It is said that the shock of the diagnosis was so huge that he decided never to return and finish his Unfinished Symphony. Symptoms of mercury poisoning from treatment added to his torment, and especially his last works depict the melancholic feelings of a tormented soul which despairs over his situation. Both his works, Winter Journey and Death and the Maiden are filled with strong syphilitic elements like death. Reflecting his despair about having been infected so young with the prospect of an early end of his career and life, his hopes had come to nothing and he wrote to a friend: In one word, I feel myself the most unhappy and miserable man on earth.[5]

Robert Schumann was a German composer and pianist and is regarded as one of the greatest composers of the Romantic era. Born in Germany in 1810 he died already in 1856 from syphilis. He probably got infected at the age of 20 and reached neurosyphilis early, suffering from a lifelong mental disorder, and melancholic, depressive episodes alternated with phases of exaltation. He made several attempts at suicide and spent his last years in a mental asylum, suffering from delusions and hallucinations of angelic and demonic visions because of the neurological damage. Schumann tended not to compose during his periods of depression but would wait until he felt better. Nevertheless there is a great sadness in some of his works as for example, the opening of the slow movement of the First Piano Trio, Op. 63, in which he leads us into the world of hopeless depression.

Syphilitic drawings and paintings are usually painted in dark colors and have a threatening look as those of Egon Schiele (1890-1918), an Austrian painter of expressionism, whose father died of syphilis. Although he himself hasn’t been infected, his artwork with distorted faces and often painted in brown or black, depict the typical syphilitic traits of deformity and  asymmetry. He died very young, at the age of 28, from the Spanish flu.

In poetry, we can also find the agony of a soul suffering from the syphilitic miasm as in Robert William Service`s poem A Hero, which shows the destructive mind of a person who wishes to kill another, and in the end decides it’s better to kill himself (in the poem). He was a British-Canadian author who was born in 1874 and passed away in 1958 from a heart attack.

A Hero

Three times I had the lust to kill,
To clutch a throat so young and fair,
And squeeze with all my might until
No breath of being lingered there.
Three times I drove the demon out,
Though on my brow was evil sweat. . . .
And yet I know beyond a doubt
He’ll get me yet, he’ll get me yet.

I know I’m mad, I ought to tell
The doctors, let them care for me,
Confine me in a padded cell
And never, never set me free;
But Oh how cruel that would be!
For I am young – and comely too . . .
Yet dim my demon I can see,
And there is but one thing to do.

Three times I beat the foul fiend back;
The fourth, I know he will prevail,
And so I’ll seek the railway track
And lay my head upon the rail,
And sight the dark and distant train,
And hear its thunder louder roll,
Coming to crush my cursed brain . . .
Oh God, have mercy on my soul!

The syphilitic miasm is seen on the mental, emotional and physical levels with the following main characteristics:

General characteristics of the syphilitic miasm

  • Dystrophy, destruction, asymmetry and deformity
  • Perversion
  • Hidden growth and reaction
  • Worse at night – from sunset to sunrise
  • Worse too hot or cold

Prominent mental and emotional symptoms

  • Hatred, resentment and revenge
  • Maliciousness and contemptuousness
  • Want of moral feeling and absence of guilt
  • Cruelty, violence, violent anger, and rage
  • Dullness and emptiness of mind and emotions
  • Difficulty comprehension
  • Secretive, closed and isolated
  • Perverted sexual behavior
  • Suspicious and distrust
  • Desire to kill and suicide
  • Delusions of being threatened, persecuted, attacked or surrounded by enemies
  • Destructive addictions
  • Mental illness, psychosis

Prominent physical symptoms

  • Bone pains, worse at night
  • Bleeding and blood diseases
  • Physical insensitivity
  • Offensive, bloody, grayish discharges
  • Deformations, asymmetries of spine, bones, face
  • Missing organs or extremities
  • Deafness or blindness
  • Ulcers and breakdown of tissues
  • Natural discharges aggravate
  • Sudden, dangerous diseases
  • Piercing eyes

The theory of miasms elucidates the fundamental cause of true chronic diseases and is essential to understand humans illnesses and how they affect the individual and the group as a whole. Being supported by the whole German nation, C.G.Jung called Hitler “the loudspeaker that magnified the inaudible whispers of the German soul“[7]. Untreated, the syphilitic miasm is transmitted to future generations, where it continues to manifest with even more destructiveness due to suppressive measures and a lifestyle that is out of tune with the individuals pure nature. Proceso Sanchez Ortega opined about miasms and the curative power of the homeopathic simillimum:

The miasms represent everything that has been superimposed on his essential being… they also represent a false personality, that is, a personality which does not correspond faithfully to his intimate essential nature.“ [8]

The homeopathic remedy, that is, the true simillimum prescribed one after another through time will effect liberation of this essential nature of man and reintegrate it into the homeostasis or harmony with the whole as well as with itself. Thus, it stimulates and impels him toward plenitud.“[9]

The capability of curing miasms by homeopathy based on the law of similars is unparalleled by any other therapeutic method and makes the destructive force of syphilis an evitable fate of mankind. As homeopaths, we are able to go back to the very origin of the disease which allows homeopathy to be truly eugenic, for the good of humankind!


[1] Freely translated from the German original:
Heinrich Heine, Nachtgedanken
Denk ich an Deutschland in der Nacht,
Dann bin ich um den Schlaf gebracht,
Ich kann nicht mehr die Augen schließen,
Und meine heißen Tränen fließen.
[2]Fest, p.152
[3] Redlich, p.302
[4] Hitler, Mein Kampf
[5] von Hellborn, p.3
[7] Redlich, p.302
[8] Ortega, p.209
[9]Ortega, p.209


Joachim C.Fest, Hitler, Verlag Ullstein, 1974
Henny Heudens-Mast, The foundation of the chronic miasms in the practice of homeopathy, Lutea Press, Florida-Massachusetts, 2005
Luc de Schepper, Hahnemannian textbook of classical homeopathy for the professional, B.Jain Publishers, New Delhi, 2006
Proceso Sanchez Ortega, Die Lehre der Homöopathie, Sonntag Verlag,  Stuttgart, 2002
Fritz Redlich, Hitler, Diagnosis of a destructive prophet, Oxford University Press, 1998
Heinrich Kreissle von Hellborn, The Life of Franz Schubert, Vol.2, Canbridge University Press, 1869/2014
Sir George Grove, Beethoven – Schubert – Mendelssohn, Palala Press, reprint 2015
Daniel Koehler, Violence and terrorism from the far right: policy options to counter an elusive threat




About the author

Katja Schuett

Katja Schutt, Msc, HP, DHM, PGHom, DVetHom, has studied homeopathy with several schools, amongst which David Little’s advanced course stands out as it offers a really deep insight into homeopathic philosophy and materia medica (simillimum.com). Her current focus lies in working with animals and studying history, the old masters, and research.

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