(Originally published in the Serbian homeopathic journal -Simillimum Times)
When the student is ready….
As I saw the announcement for Scholten’s seminar in Bratislava organized by the Slovakian Homeopathic Academy, I remembered the old proverb When the student is ready, the teacher will appear. I had the feeling that the theory of the plant kingdom was exactly what I needed to improve my work as a homeopath.
The news about the seminar was spreading quickly and it became obvious that many colleagues were open for new knowledge and experiences. From mouth to mouth, via messages, emails, facebook and viber, we managed to gather a group of fourteen professors, students and practicioners. We encouraged each other and shared our excitment and our worries about potential difficulties on the journey. Some of us had already been to various seminars abroad, but for most of us this was a competly new experience. For some, it was questionable whether they would be able to follow the lectures in English. Despite many uncertainties, a willingness to gain new knowledge and grow as people and professionals had prevailed. On the February 1st, we went on our first organized trip to the seminar, two countries away from our homes.
The first impression
The first encounter with Bratislava was pleasent for all of us. We understood each other without much difficulty because a lot of Slovaks speak English pretty well. The hotel accomodation was great and all of the necessary information was easily accessible to us.
The first surprise was the number of people who attended the seminar. Around 360 homeopaths, mostly Slovaks, but also Czechs, Poles, English, Americans, Germans, Hungarians, Serbs and others as well, together felt the importance of this event. Slovak’s Homeopathic Academy led by Dr Vladimir Petroci had organized everything so perfectly, down to the smallest details. The largest group came from Poland, around 40 attendees. All of the foreign guests had the first rows reserved so they could better hear and understand the lecturers because of the language barrier.
After the first sentences were spoken at the beginning of the seminar, we were certain that we were at the right place, at the right time. The presenters had the skill to explain the universal truths and principles, with clarity. The last of our doubts about coming there disappeared. Fascinated by the lectures and cases, we fed ourselves for three days with new insights and leasrned of new remedies for the cases that were unsolvable for us until then.
Hands full of knowledge
From Jan Scholten we learned that we can always get a clearer and more precise pitcure of the patient. Polycrests are the first thing we learn, but essentially most of our patients are some sort of rare plants, and not only metaphorically speaking. To reach the simillimum is the art of searching and understanding human nature (and nature generally). It goes beyond what we learned in basic studies of homeopathy.
Jan Scholten is a true teacher, who was not there to convince, entertain or amaze us, but to share every bit of his knowledge, without any other agendas. With total openess he talked about his failures as much as about his successes. He shared his insights and dilemmas, which all together allowed him to grow and learn from others. He helped rid us of the fear of failure, and motivated us to search for that special simillimum for each individual.
What makes his theories of minerals and plants so special?
At the very beginning of his career, he followed the principals of classical homeopathy. However he realised that he couldn’t address the most important topics in human nature just with repertorisation. He couldn’t include the topics of mother, father, brothers and sisters, relationships, responsibilities, creativity and leadership. The ideas that patients talk about the most had to be put aside in order to focus on the less important symptoms. Even the development of the repertorium never succeeded in overcoming this obstacle. Eventually, Minerals and Homeopathy became the guide for homeopaths all over the world.
But Jan didn’t stop there
He still felt like something was missing. Through his insights into the plant kingdom he had reached a higher level of precision in prescribing. He had already known that the minerals could be very sensitive, but the difference between the sensitivity of minerals and plants was not clear. Scholten gave us the answer to the question of how to differenciate them. The emotions of minerals are always onesided, always towards self and personal problems, while plants on the other hand always take into consideration other people. They want to fit in and to belong to some group (family, smaller or larger group or the entire society). Where there is no want, there is no illness. With those concepts we finally got the proper tools to address the emotions and strategies that patients use in solving their problems. Now we could cover all of this and find remedies, even when the repertory was not fully useful.
Our expectations of this seminar were high, and we got even more than we expected. The expression personal growth of the homeopath, now had a new, more powerful meaning. We got to know each other and we all worked very hard (iron series). We met new people (silver series), gained new knowledge and experiences and adopted the wisdom of a great teacher.
We go to our teachers
When the student is ready, the teacher will appear is an old proverb. Is this really the case? Teachers are everywhere around us but they don’t appear, nor here, nor there, nor anywhere, esspecially not because of us. They spend their lives dedicated to higher purpose, searching for truths and sharing them with the ones ready to listen. At what moment do we start noticing them? That moment comes whan we are ready to learn more, to allow ourselves to start questioning our beliefs, to get out of our comfort zone, endure the anxiety and discomfort and learn something new.