267

We gain possession of the powers of indigenous plants and of such as may be had in a fresh state in the most complete and certain manner by mixing their freshly expressed juice immediately with equal parts of spirits of wine of a strength sufficient to burn in a lamp. After this has stood a day and a night in a close stoppered bottle and deposited the fibrinous and albuminous matters, the clear superincumbent fluid is then to be decanted off for medicinal use.1 All fermentation of the vegetable juice will be at once checked by the spirits of wine mixed with it and rendered impossible for the future, and the entire medicinal power of the vegetable juice is thus retained (perfect and uninjured) for ever by keeping the preparation in well-corked bottles and excluded from the sun’s light.2

1 Buchholz (Taschenb. f. Scheidek. u. Apoth. a. d. J., 1815, Weimar, Abth. I, vi) assures his readers (and his reviewer in the Leipziger Literaturzeitung, 1816, No. 82, does not contradict him) that for this excellent mode of operating medicines we have to thank the campaign in Russia, whence it was (in 1812) imported into Germany. According to the noble practice of many Germans to be unjust towards their own countrymen, he conceals the fact that this discovery and those directions, which he quotes in my very words from the first edition of the Organon of Rational Medicine, 230 and note, proceed from me, and that I first published them to the world two years before the Russian campaign (the Organon appeared in 1810). Some folks would rather assign the origin of a discovery to the deserts of Asia than to a German to whom the honor belongs. O tempora! O mores!

Alcohol has certainly been sometimes before this used for mixing with vegetable juices, e.g., to preserve them some time before making extracts of them, but never with the view of administering them in this form.

2 Although equal parts of alcohol and freshly expressed juice are usually the most suitable proportion for affecting the deposition of the fibrinous and albuminous matters, yet for plants that contain much thick mucus (e.g. Symphytum officinale, Viola tricolor, etc.), or an excess of albumen (e.g., Aethusa cynapium, Solanum nigrum, etc.), a double proportion of alcohol is generally required for this object. Plants that are very deficient in juice, as Oleander, Buxus, Taxus, Ledum, Sabina, etc., must first be pounded up alone into a moist, fine mass and the stirred up with a double quantity of alcohol, in order that the juice may combine with it, and being thus extracted by the alcohol, may be pressed out; these latter may also when dried be brought with milk-sugar to the millionfold trituration, and then be further diluted and potentized (v. 271)

268

The other exotic plants, barks, seeds and roots that cannot be obtained in the fresh state the sensible practitioner will never take in the pulverized form on trust, but will first convince himself of their genuineness in their crude, entire state before making any employment of them.1

1 In order to preserve them in the form of powder, a precaution is requisite that has hitherto been usually neglected by druggists, and hence powders, even of well-dried animal and vegetable substances could not be preserved uninjured even in well-corked bottles. The entire crude vegetable substances, though perfectly dry, yet contain, as an indispensable condition of the cohesion of their texture, a certain quantity of moisture, which dose not indeed prevent the unpulverized drug from remaining in as dry a state as is requisite to preserve it from corruption, but which is quite too much for the finely pulverized state. The animal or vegetable substance which in its entire state was perfectly dry, furnishes, therefore, when finely pulverized, a somewhat moist powder, which without rapidly becoming spoilt and mouldy, can yet not be preserved in corked bottles if not previously freed from this superfluous moisture. This is the best effected by spreading out the powder in a flat tin saucer with a raised edge, which floats in a vessel full of boiling water (i.e. a water-bath), and, by means of stirring it about, drying it to such a degree that all the small atoms of it (no longer stick together in lumps, but) like dry, fine sand, are easily separated from each other, and are readily converted into dust. In this dry state the fine powders may be kept forever uninjured in well-corked and sealed bottles, in all their original complete medicinal power, without ever being injured by mites or mould; and they are best preserved when the bottles are kept protected from the daylight (in covered boxes, chests, cases). If not shut up in air-tight vessels, and not preserved from the access of the light of the sun and day, all animal and vegetable substances in time gradually lose their medicinal power more and more, even in the entire state, but still more in the form of powder.

269 Fifth Edition

The homœopathic system of medicine develops for its use, to a hitherto unheard-of degree, the spirit-like medicinal powers of the crude substances by means of a process peculiar to it and which has hitherto never been tried, whereby only they all become penetratingly efficacious1 and remedial, even those that in the crude state give no evidence of the slightest medicinal power on the human body.

269 Sixth Edition

The homœopathic system of medicine develops for its special use, to a hitherto unheard-of degree, the inner medicinal powers of the crude substances by means of a process peculiar to it and which has hitherto never been tried, whereby only they all become immeasurably and penetratingly efficacious1 and remedial, even those that in the crude state give no evidence of the slightest medicinal power on the human body.

This remarkable change in the qualities of natural bodies develops the latent, hitherto unperceived, as if slumbering2 hidden, dynamic ( 11) powers which influence the life principle, change the well-being of animal life.3 This is effected by mechanical action upon their smallest particles by means of rubbing and shaking and through the addition of an indifferent substance, dry of fluid, are separated from each other. This process is called dynamizing, potentizing (development of medicinal power) and the products are dynamizations4 or potencies in different degrees.

1 Long before this discovery of mine, experience had taught several changes which could be brought about in different natural substances by means of friction, for instance, warmth, heat, fire, development of odor in odorless bodies, magnetization of steel, and so forth. But all these properties produced by friction were related only to physical and inanimate things, whereas it is a law of nature according to which physiological and pathogenic changes take place in the body’s condition by means of forces capable of changing the crude material of drugs, even in such as had never shown any medicinal properties. This is brought about by trituration and succussion, but under the condition of employing an indifferent vehicle in certain proportions. this wonderful physical and especially physiological and pathogenic law of nature had not been discovered before my time. No wonder then, that the present students of nature and physicians (so for unknowing) cannot have faith in the magical curative powers of the minute doses of medicines prepared according to homœopathic rules (dynamized).

2 The same thing is seen in a bar of iron and steel where a slumbering trace of latent magnetic force cannot but be recognized in their interior. Both, after their completion by means of the forge stand upright, repulse the north pole of a magnetic needle with the lower end and attract the south pole, while the upper end shows itself as the south pole of the magnetic needle. But this is only a latent force; not even the finest iron particles can be drawn magnetically or held on either end of such a bar.

Only after this bar of steel is dynamized, rubbing it with a dull file in one direction, will it become a true active powerful magnet, one able to attract iron and steel to itself and impart to another bar of steel by mere contact and even some distance away, magnetic power and this in a higher degree the more it has been rubbed. In the same way will triturating a medicinal substance and shaking of its solution (dynamization, potentation) develop the medicinal powers hidden within and manifest them more and more or if one may say so, spiritualizes the material substance itself.

3 On this account it refers to the increase and stronger development of their power to cause changes in the health of animals and men if these natural substances in this improved state, are brought very near to the living sensitive fibre or come in contact with it (by means of intake or olfaction). Just as a magnetic bar especially if its magnetic force is increased (dynamized) can show magnetic power only in a needle of steel whose pole is near or touches it. The steel itself remains unchanged in the remaining chemical and physical properties and can bring about no changes in other metals (for instance, in brass), just as little as dynamized medicines can have any action upon lifeless things.

4 We hear daily how homœopathic medicinal potencies are called mere dilutions, when they are the very opposite, i.e., a true opening up of the natural substances bringing to light and revealing the hidden specific medicinal powers contained within and brought forth by rubbing and shaking. The aid of a chosen, unmedicinal medium of attenuation is but a secondary condition.

Simple dilution, for instance, the solution of a grain of salt will become water, the grain of salt will disappear in the dilution with much water and will never develop into medicinal salt which by means of our well prepared dynamization, is raised to most marvellous power.