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Use of potencies

With more than moderate interest I read the interview with Alize Timmerman.

The C4 philosophy seems to me to be a very interesting one. The question that arises reading about the different levels of the different potencies (C1 to C8) is about the source. Where does this knowledge come from? Is it really scientifically and empirically explored or just hypothetical? I consider this to be a very important topic because when somebody important as Alize Timmerman makes such a statement about the use of potencies many homeopaths, and student for certain, will follow these directions as an undeniable truth.

It must however be emphasized that this approach to the potency problem, how valuable it may seem, has nothing to do with Samuel Hahnemann. According to Hahnemann the only goal is to treat the imbalanced Dynamis!

Hahnemann Organon § 11 Sixth Edition
When a person falls ill, it is only this spiritual, self acting (automatic) vital force, everywhere present in his organism, that is primarily deranged by the dynamic 1 influence upon it of a morbific agent inimical to life; it is only the vital force, deranged to such an abnormal state, that can furnish the organism with its disagreeable sensations, and incline it to the irregular processes which we call disease; for, as a power invisible in itself, and only cognizable by its effects on the organism, its morbid derangement only makes itself known by the manifestation of disease in the sensations and functions of those parts of the organism exposed to the senses of the observer and physician, that is, by morbid symptoms, and in no other way can it make itself known. 2

Hahnemann Organon § 17 Sixth Edition
Now, as in the cure effected by the removal of the whole of the perceptible signs and symptoms of the disease the internal alteration of the vital principle to which the disease is due - consequently the whole of the disease - is at the same time removed,1 it follows that the physician has only to remove the whole of the symptoms in order, at the same time, to abrogate and annihilate the internal change, that is to say, the morbid derangement of the vital force - consequently the totality of the disease, the disease itself.2 But when the disease is annihilated the health is restored, and this is the highest, the sole aim of the physician who knows the true object of his mission, which consists not in learned - sounding prating, but in giving aid to the sick.

When following Hahnemann in using potentized remedies we can find his following remarks.

Hahnemann: Chronic diseases Page 145:
‘Homoeopathy, by a certain treatment of the crude medicinal substances, which had not been invented before its foundation and development, advances them into the state of progressive and high development of their indwelling forces, in order that it may then use them in curing in the most perfect manner. Some of these medicines in their crude state seem to have a very imperfect, insignificant medicinal action..’

‘The changes which take place in material substances, especially in medicinal ones, through long-continued triturations with a non-medicinal powder, or when dissolved, through a long-continued shaking with a non-medicinal fluid, are so incredible, that they approach the miraculous, and it is a cause of joy that the discovery of these wonderful changes belongs to Homoeopathy.'

To produce effective homeopathic remedies the process of dynamization or potentization should therefore be undertaken. In order to free the latent medicinal powers the substance to be potentized should be triturated up to C3 after which every substance can be dissolved in water and alcohol. Potentizing remedies is necessary to create remedies that are able to reach the dynamis in a direct manner and thus cure the dynamic cause of disease.

Hahnemann: Chronic diseases page 149:
'In order to produce a homogeneity in the preparation of the homoeopathic and especially the antipsoric remedies, at least in the form of powders, I advise the reducing of medicines only to this millionth potency (C3), no more and no less and to prepare from this the solutions and the necessary potencies of these solutions; this has been my own custom. After reaching the C3 level every substance can be dissolved in water and alcohol. Hahnemann obviously did not triturate the remedies to C4.'

Hahnemann: Chronic diseases page 146:
‘What can I say of the pure metals and of their sulphurets, but that all of them, without any exception become by this treatment equally soluble in water and in alcohol, and every one of them develops the medicinal virtue peculiar to it in the purest, simplest manner and in an incredibly high degree? But the chemical medicinal substances thus prepared now also stand above the chemical laws.’

The process of creating energetic remedies is called potentizing or dynamizing. There is no distinction made by Hahnemann between the processes of triturating or succussing other than that the process of trituration is needed to prepare insoluble substances to be dissolved in water and alcohol.

Hahnemann’s Organon § 269 Sixth Edition
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.

A very often occurring misconception of idea is that the centesimal potencies should be succussed 100 times to prepare a next potency. This at least is not according the instructions of Hahnemann. Reading the Sixth Edition of the Organon we see that 100 shakes only are used to prepare the LM potencies!

Hahnemann: Chronic diseases page 150:
The preparation of the higher potencies is then continued with two strokes of the arm**

(** After many experiments and searching comparisons with the patients I have for several years preferred from conviction to give to the medicinal fluids which are to be elevated to higher potencies and at the same time to be rendered milder, only two shakes (with two strokes of the arm) instead of the ten shakes given by others, because the potentizing in the latter case by the repeated shaking passes far beyond the attenuation at every step (though this is one hundred fold)

Hahnemann remarks that more shakes passes far beyond the dilution. Therefore the remedy loses its capacity to provoke a mild reaction of the dynamis.

Hahnemann’s Organon § 269 Sixth Edition, Footnote 6:
‘But with so small a diluting medium as 100 to 1 of the medicine, if many succussions by means of a powerful machine are forced into it, medicines are then developed which, especially in the higher degrees of dynamization, act almost immediately, but with furious, even dangerous violence, especially in weakly patients, without having a lasting, mild reaction of the vital principle’.

If a remedy acts violently the reaction of the vital force will be equally vigorously. Therefore the remedy will most probably act only for a very short time. (Action= reaction principle). Due to his experiments and experience working with the potencies Hahnemann concluded the centesimal potencies to be kind of ‘a mistake!’

Hahnemann’s Organon § 279 Sixth Edition, Footnote 1:
‘The praise bestowed of late years by some few homœopathists on the larger doses is owing to this, either that they chose low dynamizations of the medicines to be administered, as I myself used to do for many years, from not knowing any better, or that the medicines selected were not perfectly homœopathic’.

The dose using the centesimal potencies is much larger (dilution 1:100) than using LM-potencies (dilution 1:50.000). The Centesimal potencies are only shaken twice and therefore where called the low dynamizations. During the 1820’s Hahnemann mainly used the centesimal potencies as is stated in the publication of the chronic diseases of 1828. During these years Hahnemann practiced the ‘prescribe and wait’, waiting for 30 to 100 days, which he abandoned with the publication of the fifth edition of the Organon where he prescribed homeopathic remedies on a weekly basis.

Hahnemann’s Organon § 247 Fifth Edition:
‘Under these conditions, the smallest doses of the best selected homœopathic medicine may be repeated with the best, often with incredible results, at intervals of fourteen, twelve, ten, eight, seven days, and, where rapidity is requisite, in chronic diseases resembling cases of acute disease, at still shorter intervals, but in acute diseases at very much shorter periods - every twenty - four, twelve, eight, four hours, in the very acutest every hour, up to as often as every five minutes, - in ever case in proportion to the more or less rapid course of the diseases and of the action of the medicine employed, as is more distinctly explained in the last note’.

Furthermore Hahnemann’s experience led him to prescribe the homeopathic potentized remedies even more often i.e. on a daily basis, but only under certain conditions. In the last publication of the Chronic diseases of 1837 Hahnemann writes.

Hahnemann: Chronic diseases 1837
‘Concerning the technical part of homoeopathy’

Experience has shown me, as it has no doubt also shown to most of my followers, that it is most useful in diseases of any magnitude (no excepting even the most acute, and still more so in the half-acute, in the tedious and most tedious) to give to the patient the powerful homoeopathic pellet or pellets only in solution, and this solution in divided doses. In this way we give the medicine, dissolved in seven to twenty tablespoonfuls of water without any addition, in acute and very acute diseases every six, four or two hours; where the danger is urgent, even every hour or every half-hour, a tablespoonful at a time; with weak persons or children, only a small part of a tablespoonful (one or two teaspoonfuls or coffee spoonfuls) may be given as a dose.

In chronic diseases I have found it best to give a dose (e. g., a spoonful) of a solution medicine a least every two days, more usually every day. Even in the use of centesimal potencies Hahnemann prescribed on a daily basis! The method of waiting 30 to 100 days after prescribing is obviously based on the 4th edition of the Organon (1829) and the first publication of the Chronic diseases (1828)! The development of homeopathy in the late 19th and early 20th century in America must therefore considered to be based on the 4th edition of the Organon. The publication of 1837 is preceding Hahnemann’s Paris period where the development of yet another potency scale was realized, the LM-potency scale. The LM potencies are prescribed in the same way Hahnemann prescribed the centesimal potencies already in 1837.

The publication of the 6th edition of the Organon took another 78 years. In the meanwhile homeopathy went ‘worldwide’ based on, yes, the 4th edition of the Organon. Generations of homeopaths learned to practice homeopathy and prescribe their potencies based on the 4th edition which, according to Hahnemann in the 6th edition of the Organon, was to be considered a mistake.

Beside the homeopathic classification of diseases, the use of LM-potencies also became oblivious. This has worked out to be a very much against the interest of homeopathy. It might be one of the main reasons why homeopathy is in decline worldwide. The LM’s are shaken 100 times between every step.

Hahnemann Organon § 270 Sixth Edition
In order to best obtain this development of power, a small part of the substance to be dynamized, say one grain, is triturated for three hours with three times one hundred grains sugar of milk according to the method described below 1 up to the one-millionth part in powder form. For reasons given below (b) one grain of this powder is dissolved in 500 drops of a mixture of one part of alcohol and four parts of distilled water, of which one drop is put in a vial. To this are added 100 drops of pure alcohol 2 and given one hundred strong succussions with the hand against a hard but elastic body.3 This is the medicine in the first degree of dynamization with which small sugar globules 4 may then be moistened 5 and quickly spread on blotting paper to dry and kept in a well-corked vial with the sign of (I) degree of potency. Only one 6 globule of this is taken for further dynamization, put in a second new vial (with a drop a water in order to dissolve it) and then with 100 powerful succussions.

It might seem quite euphoric but the Master himself called the LM-potency the most perfect potency. For homeopath’s it must be considered an important invitation to study and use these potencies.

Hahnemann Organon § 270 Sixth Edition, footnote 7
This assertion will not appear improbable, if one considers that by means of this method of dynamization (the preparations thus produced, I have found after many laborious experiments and counter-experiments, to be the most powerful and at the same time mildest in action, i.e., as the most perfected) the material part of the medicine is lessened with each degree of dynamization 50,000 times yet incredibly increased in power, so that the further dynamization of 125 and 18 ciphers reaches only the third degree of dynamization. The thirtieth thus progressively prepared would give a fraction almost impossible to be expressed in numbers. It becomes uncommonly evident that the material part by means of such dynamization (development of its true, inner medicinal essence) will ultimately dissolve into its individual spirit-like, (conceptual) essence. In its crude state therefore, it may be considered to consist really only of this underdeveloped conceptual essence. The LM potencies have to be considered the high potencies meant by Hahnemann as they are shaken 100 times for the preparation of every next potency.

Therefore in using the LM’s every potency can or must be used. In the centesimal potencies the level of potency only very slowly rises, therefore the intermediate potencies are omitted during treatment. We only use the Kentian scale. (C30, C200 etc.). Using the LM’s we can use every potency. Using the LM’s the curative power of homeopathic remedies is boosted tremendously. These potencies can be administered on a daily base and therefore their healing capacity is raised.

Hahnemann Organon § 246 Sixth Edition
‘…..And this may be very happily affected, as recent and oft-repeated observations have taught me under the following conditions: firstly, if the medicine selected with the utmost care was perfectly homœopathic; secondly, if it is highly potentized, dissolved in water and given in proper small dose that experience has taught as the most suitable in definite intervals for the quickest accomplishment of the cure but with the precaution, that the degree of every dose deviate somewhat from the preceding and following in order that the vital principle which is to be altered to a similar medicinal disease be not aroused to untoward reactions and revolt as is always the case1 with unmodified and especially rapidly repeated doses.'

1 What I said in the fifth edition of the Organon, in a long note to this paragraph in order to prevent these undesirable reactions of the vital energy, was all the experience I then had justified. But during the last four or five years, however, all these difficulties are wholly solved by my new altered but perfected method. The same carefully selected medicine may now be given daily and for months, if necessary in this way, namely, after the lower degree of potency has been used for one or two weeks in the treatment of chronic disease, advance is made in the same way to higher degrees, (beginning according to the new dynamization method, taught herewith with the use of the lowest degrees).

Hahnemann Organon § 246 Sixth Edition, Footnote 1
We ought not even with the best chosen homœopathic medicine, for instance one pellet of the same potency that was beneficial at first, to let the patient have a second or third dose, taken dry. In the same way, if the medicine was dissolved in water and the first dose proved beneficial, a second or third and even smaller dose from the bottle standing undisturbed, even in intervals of a few days, would prove no longer beneficial, even though the original preparation had been potentized with ten succussions or as I suggested later with but two succussions in order to obviate this disadvantage and this according to above reasons. But through modification of every dose in its dynamiztion degree, as I herewith teach, there exists no offence, even if the doses be repeated more frequently, even if the medicine be ever so highly potentized with ever so many succussions. It almost seems as if the best selected homœopathic remedy could best extract the morbid disorder from the vital force and in chronic disease to extinguish the same only if applied in several different forms

Talking about high potencies Hahnemann obviously means the LM potencies.

For the future development of homeopathy it is, I think, of grave importance that the statements we make on behalf of homeopathy must scientifically and empirically be true and not just based on opinion or fashion.

Hahnemann Homeopathy Foundation (by Ewald Stöteler)
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