The Allopathic Approach: A Trap for Homeopathy
Allopathy always seems to remain content with spending endless time to coin a “name” or “broad definition” for any “new” disease, which is usually nothing more than a sophisticated sounding word, extended by a drag net of common symptoms. This now should please the patient as he has been identified as having an accepted disease. There are plenty patients who have a non-accepted illness. I refer for instance to any illness that baffles the scientific community: people who are oversensitive to everything in the environment (now called multiple or universal reactors but for a long time referred to as imposters) or people who react adversely to drugs and get blamed for it. Carl Jung laments that in his day and age, psychiatry, a step child of medicine, was not interested in what the patient had to say, but rather in how to arrive at a diagnosis, describe symptoms, and compile statistics. Jung says that, for his colleagues and looked at from the clinical point of view, the human personality of the patient, his individuality, was of no importance. Patients were labeled, rubber-stamped with a diagnosis, and for the most part, that settled the matter. I recognize the homeopath in C. Jung when he says,
“I have in the course of the years accustomed myself wholly to disregard the diagnosing of specific neuroses, and I have sometimes found myself in a quandary when some word-addict urged me to hand him a specific diagnosis,” (C. Jung, 1966, p.86).
Has anything changed nowadays?
Carl Jung practiced homeopathy unconsciously when he advocated “individuality,” a word that is shunned by the allopathic community.
The second part in which allopathy shines is its diagnostic endeavors, with which they want to dazzle the public as “the cutting edge of research.” All hope is on genetic therapy, but 40 years of this has not resulted in one cure of a patient, yet has lead to multiple deaths of patients. This bring to our memory how Pasteur killed thousands of innocent people with his vaccination for rabies till he reduced the dose, something he should have learned from Hering who in 1840, forty years ahead of Pasteur, already cured rabies with Lyssin. But none of these dazzling and scientific techniques has brought to patients the answer of why they have this illness and most of the time it has not brought forth a therapeutic answer, at least not one that brings a true cure, being an elimination of the diseased terrain to avoid recurrence of the disease.
It is important for the homeopath not to fall into the trap of “this name giving,” and as a result to be impressed or even deterred in giving assistance to the patient. This is the main reason why the homeopath should avoid using the allopathic general disease name, and rather focus on what the patient has to say as a “concept.” What do I mean by concepts? A concept (or we might use Jung’s term ‘complex’ –Footnote 1) can be expressed by one or several words, usually considered the main theme reflecting the often long-term suffering linked to painful recollections of the patient. Don’t be surprised if the patient expresses this to you, even on your question, “What brings you to me (the CC)?” You will be surprised how patients are very clear in recognizing the crux of their suffering, and will answer you with, “I have lack of self worth,” or “I repress my feelings,” or “I have problems being intimate with people I love,” or even “I have lost all contact with the real world, I am always looking for refuge in a dream world!” These are not disease names, but rather expressions of spiritual or emotional diseases, and homeopaths should welcome these expressions by far above the diagnostic named diseases, “I have manic depressive psychosis,” “I have Chronic Fatigue,” “I have OCD,” “I have a yeast problem,” and the countless names allopathy has invented or named after their eminent discoverers of the disease. Now remember the immortal words of Kent, “The more the symptoms determine the allopathic disease name, the less important they are for us in finding our simillimum!” This reference to Aphorism 153 should always be our guide, no matter what the allopathic disease name is.
Footnote 1: A complex (a feeling-toned) is a picture of a psychological nature, often of a traumatic or painful nature, which make up chiefly the contents of the unconscious. They constitute the personal and private side of psychic life. Therefore it is often suppressed (the Natrum elements) or repressed (the Magnesium elements). Whenever someone during the inquiry touches on such a delicate complex in a patient, he might react with silence, anger, irritability, crying, hesitation, stuttering…It corresponds to a painful “Never Well Since” (NWS) in our homeopathic history. It is a cluster of images and ideas around an emotional center, which is the core delusion of the patient. Often negative delusions (i.e. “I am ugly; I am short; I walk on my knees) are high-feeling toned complexes and even “positive” delusions (positive temporarily only for the patient, i.e., “I am a prince; I am a general”) are generated often by a painful NWS.
The above thoughts are applicable for any allopathic diagnosis, and therefore also for OCD. I once again see a disturbing but familiar allopathic trend. As much as modern medicine is always touting the newest discoveries and progress it is making in these “mysterious” diseases, (ODD, ASHD, ADD, ASD or Autism Spectrum Disorder), the main concerns and at the same time the main failures remain exactly the same over the last 100 years. Let’s give a certain psychological behavior such description that the majority of children can be dragged in that “name-net” like fish in the vast sea. My main concern in this case, is that each child, slightly deviating from the socially accepted norm, will be caught in this net. This society, like all societies before, has no place for the individual but only for the masses controlled by some individuals. Anyone not conforming to the rules set by some people higher up (those that were allowed or took the power to express their individualism) is labeled a problem child, an eccentric and a trouble maker.
In defining these illnesses or syndromes like OCD, allopathy puts as many symptoms in its definition as they possible could have found in all these children so that “no child is left behind.” But to allopathy’s despair, they still have to admit that they have these “exceptional” cases that do not seem to fit in that large net of symptoms. It is what we would call, “individuality,” a dreaded word for allopathy since it hinders them in classifying these unfortunate victims in a vast group and then to applying the “protocol” to suppress as many symptoms as possible. As we will see, allopathy is still struggling with these two concepts and has to admit their failures (although in a disguised form) about the two things any patient or parent of patient would like to hear when suffering from OCD: What are the causes? And, is there an effective therapy?
Causalities of OCD according to Allopathy
Having studied Internal Medicine and Neurology as a specialization, I have learned that we always consider an array of possible etiologies when allopathy is confronted with a disease whose causality is unknown. Be it Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer, spastic dysphonia and now OCD, allopathy always concludes, “the following elements may play a role: Genetic, infectious, environmental, ‘stress,’ the ubiquitous virus, and neurotoxicity,” to name the most common. In OCD, much attention is paid to neurotransmitter abnormalities, but therapy using serotonin and norepinephrine are so dubious that behavior therapy is still the most important treatment. And inevitably, at the end, a list of questions starts with, “Do you have this symptom and that symptom? Scoring high on the list automatically approves you to be the carrier of that disease name and inevitably, Prozac, Zoloft and Paxil will be tried on you.
I found it important to look at what allopathy has done so far and what symptoms are grouped in OCD. Those symptoms that are used most commonly to label you with OCD are the least important to find the simillimum. Homeopaths, be aware because there is no easier mistake to make than not to follow Aphorism 153 (rare, strange and peculiar symptoms of the patient and the remedy are the guide for the simillimum)! But knowing these allopathic symptoms will actually have one good consequence: it will help us understand the dominant miasmatic condition, making us understand why these children were at risk and where the risk is in future parents having children. This last aspect is all important, yet because of the minimal impact and application of good homeopathy, very little applied to the horror of reality. Will it ever happen?
Homeopathy’s View on OCD’s Causality
We should have learned a little more from one of the greatest thinkers of the previous century, Carl Jung. Neuroses, phobias, schizophrenia and other related diseases then, were just as frequent as in our time, but obviously because of lack of suppressive allopathic medication, more frank and outspoken.
Clinical diagnoses such as OCD are helpful, since they give the physician and homeopath a certain orientation. They do not, however, help the patient. The crucial thing is the story. It alone shows the human background, the human suffering with its triggers and miasmatic reactions, and only with the knowledge it conveys can the doctor’s therapy begin. Jung practiced as a homeopath without knowing it because he devoted much of his attention to what he called meaningful connections or what we would refer to as NWS or “Ailments from.” For him the term psychogenesis meant the following: “The essential cause of a neurosis and psychosis with its dreams and delusions is of psychic nature. It may, for instance be a psychic shock, a grueling conflict, a wrong kind of psychic adaptation, etc.” (C. Jung, Psychogenesis of Mental Disease, p. 226). Moments when a new psychological adjustment, a new adaptation is demanded, facilitate the outbreak of a neurosis. The neurotic is ill because he is unconscious of his problems. The neurotic is a person who can never have things in the world as he would like them, and he cannot enjoy the past either. Delusions and dreams are not what allopathic medicine understands them to be– senseless thoughts or irrational happenings, disconnected and completely devoid of any truth. If this were the case, we would never use the many pages of delusions and dreams in our repertory and yet there is not even one chronic case where you could not discover delusions. Delusions and dreams all contain a germ of meaning, a kernel of truth! A personality, a constitution, a temperament, a life history, a pattern of hopes and desires lie behind a delusion. The fault is ours if we do not understand them.
Look for the Core Delusion
When we read the description of OCD, “recurrent and persistent thoughts, excessive and obsessional thoughts, and repetitive behavior such as hand washing, praying, tearing things, tapping with finger or foot, etc.) it fits perfectly the homeopathic definition of a delusion or fixed idea as mentioned before. There may be many delusions present in one patient, but the one that interests us most is the “core delusion.” How do we define this?
A core delusion is the expression of the dominant, ruling emotion. It will be the driving force behind the actions, thoughts and plans of the patient, and will create along the way, secondary delusions. Therefore all compensations and secondary delusions have their origin in the core delusion. It is imperative for everyone (as we all have a core delusion) to execute compensations, which can be regarded as defense mechanisms to flee from the core delusion (when it is negative) or to reinforce the positive delusion. The patient will have to execute much compensation to stay away from his inevitable fate: he will have to face this core delusion at some point in his life. The patient’s “good” delusion obviously is bad for him as it impedes his self-growth. If we don’t ask enough “Why’s?” to the psychological behavior of the patient, he will express his compensations far away from the core delusion and try to coach you in prescribing for the mask rather than the shadow side, a mask that is formed by all these compensations. This will lead to the selection of a simile: “The mask is the simile (compensations), the shadow side is the simillimum (the core delusion)!” An Ancient Chinese Proverb expresses the same: “Confucius says to return to the root is to find the meaning, but to pursue appearance is to miss the source!” Finding the core delusion, is what we call the “Ah-ah,” the light bulb that appears: “I see the essence of my patient.” This core delusion is the center of the disease progression of the individual. All his mental-emotional, and physical compensations will be determined and guided by the primary delusion.
One should not despair when not finding the core delusion: as much as this is a very important piece of information, the homeopath can still find the remedy, by filling the rest of the pieces. And it is always advisable
Once we have to make the differential diagnosis between two or three remedies, to look carefully at their delusions and see which ones match the patient’s picture more.
OCD’s Forgotten Etiology
It should be clear to the reader, that to find OCD‘s causality, as for most psychosomatic diseases, one should concentrate on the psychological traumas leading to fixed ideas or delusions of the patient more than on anything else. First of all, why do homeopaths give so much importance to delusions? In general, in homeopathic practice, delusion rubrics are scarcely used and frequently misunderstood. When homeopaths attempt to find the simillimum, they need to take into account Aphorism 153 rubrics, “rare, strange, and peculiar symptoms”, and there is no doubt that delusions belong in this category. Let’s not forget that there is a second important requirement for selecting the simillimum: symptoms must have remained permanent over some time! Since a delusion is a fixed idea, by definition, nothing can be more permanent. Therefore a delusion should be considered to be among the most valuable symptoms for the determination of the simillimum, since it belongs by definition to the Aphorism 153 rubrics. The delusion, in the homeopathic sense–and even according to Jung–always contains some grain of truth, but the individual’s and other people’s quality of life is affected by the patient’s not being able to let go of this fixed idea.
Any one of us might have the feeling at some point in our life that we are all alone in this world and that no one cares about us (e.g., isolation through betrayal by spouse or best friend, the loneliness of an immigrant, or that caused by a physical handicap), but most often this is a fleeting moment: not a delusion but an illusion. A delusion is an advanced state of an illusion. In our repertory we often find the same remedies under both rubrics; it is really a matter of intensity. If, two years after the fact, a psychological trauma still evokes the sentiment, “I am all alone in the world,” and if all my actions and thoughts are ruled by this notion, then it can be defined as a delusion. Such a fixed idea will dominate the life of the patient: everything he thinks, does, and plans is fueled by that delusion. These fixed thoughts, often morbid, overcome the patient and have powers of their own that are hard to control. One will observe that most delusions or fixed ideas come from fixed emotions. Recurrent or long-lasting unresolved emotions are apt to create a pattern in our brain, a memory that will be triggered by the slightest, even innocent insinuation. Eventually, we carry over these particular emotions–anger that flares up easily, involuntary weeping, a sense of anguish and foreboding, obsessive compulsive behavior, etc.–because we have become addicted to them and they have become part of our personality (Thoughts, persistent in the language of our rubrics)!
This psychological trauma to create amongst other conditions, OCD, often stems from a very young age on. The “young” age is never to be underestimated as this can refer to the intra uterine events: allopathy has still not linked emotions of the pregnant mother to the unborn fetus, while we see the results of these unfortunate traumas in many of our young patients. For many diseases, such as OCD, or even murderous behavior in children, the homeopath can answer the two most important questions that allopathy always fails to address: “What is the cause of this behavior?” and “Is there an effective therapy for my child with such behavior?” This is equally true for many adults with similar OCD behavior.
What Emotions can Cause OCD?
To say that certain emotions alone would be responsible for the appearance of OCD, would be naÃ¯ve from my point. As usual, “the virus is nothing, the terrain is everything!” The painful emotions are Jung’s “meaningful associations” as referred to before. But it is the terrain that will determine if OCD will appear. The emotion is the match that lights the fire if there is wood (terrain) available. Any homeopath should know the theory of miasms (see my book, Hahnemann Revisited) and therefore recognize that the majority of the OCD symptoms belong to the sycotic miasm. So if the patient for instance has a dominant psoric miasmatic state, and the same trigger (emotion) happens to him, no OCD will appear. The “terrain” or predominant miasmatic state of the patient is the determining factor. It is the inherent tendency to respond automatically along certain qualitatively predetermined, individual, characteristic and fixed response patterns. Our reactions to certain events are compulsive, not elective. Each individual reacts according to some innate predetermined emotional pattern that makes it impossible for him to respond otherwise.
Having said that, almost any emotion mentioned in our repertory can be the trigger or match that lights the fire. Of course some will be present more than others in OCD or “kind of OCD” patients. I refer here to emotions such as fright, abandonment, betrayal, domination, cruelty and indignation.
Dr. Luc de Schepper will give a seminar in Frankfurt/Main, Germany (Saalbau Bockenheim) on the 7-8th November 2009. For more details and booking please see the following website: www.dgmh.org