From Malcolm Rae's First Letter to Me
A few months earlier I had bought equipment from Mr Rae and then spent a Christmas on finding concepts that showed up to be very similar to what he had come up with over a period of 20 years.
I did more than that later. When Malcolm Rae died later in 1979, we had started collaborating on developing software that I later explored further on my own for years.
Invitation to analyse a medical doctors patients
Six years later, in the latter half of 1985, an internationally recognised medical doctor and author in Norway wanted me to analyse patients of his by use of several ◦MGA instruments and software. He had by then got a compendium of mental symptoms of remedies I had investigated so far, and liked it. He wrote among other things:
My main conditions did not allow me to follow up on the doctor's invitation. Yet, as time went by I found time to investigate people and remedies further, though, and ended up with lists of remedies and irregularities. Some of them are published on this site. There is very much more where it comes from.
It is not easy to explore or research in these waters, but not very difficult either, at least not initially. The Swedish professor Olov Lindahl explains how to conduct a series of so-called clinical trials in Vetenskap och beprövad erfarenhet (Science and Proven Experience) (1978). It works more or less like this: Instead of having many persons to test a method or remedy, use one person as a tester many times on end, in a series: "One person and often" and not "Many persons once or twice or thrice each". The data that is added in each of the two approaches, may be handled alike from there on. Dr Lindahl's approach to testing gives a rough inkling once there are estimates of the so-called placebo-effect (an effect of faith, coincidence and other factors). Dr Lindahl's commendable, explorative longitudal self-testing approach is treated on pp. 109-16 in his book.
Effects of potentised preparations of separate entities (plants, minerals, and the like), are throught to effect living organisms in ways that are peculiar to each sort of preparation. Such effects are described in books like the homeopathic Materica Medicas of Dr. William Boericke, Dr. James T. Kent and other Materia Medicas. The books that describe homeopathic preparations and what they could do for you, do not agree in all respects, though. Adding to that, due to "the complexity of each individual human body, fifty different people may react in fifty different ways to the same substance."(Carroll, sv. 'homeopathy'). This point should make us look better into the value of homeopathic provings and the value of the symptom lists that various Materia Medicas contain.
Also, there is a description of the 38 Bach remedies that is furnished by the Bach Centre. About 65 more "potentised essences" are included in this survey of about 500 preparations and decoctions: [More]
Why say remedy and potency when you can say impression and charge?
The term 'impression' may be used for such as 'potentised preparation', 'essence', 'homeopathic remedy', 'homeopathic medicine', etc. But why? The answer is there is no effective physiological substances involved - so "remedy" and "medicine" may mislead many. And "potentised" has nothing to do with energy, since the 'remedies' carry no added energy, as judged from how they are made. Therefore 'impression'. It covers both 'remedy' and 'preparation', even a suspected placebo effect, and that is good.
To the degree an impression is stored its carrier - water or alcohol or suger pellets - the impression has a charge that is often referred to by "potency" elsewhere. I have the term 'charge' from Malcolm Rae (1977).
Thus, impression and charge replace the not so good terms "remedy" and "potency" in an attempt to bring key terms more in correspondence with findings. That could be essential.
The preparations form part of complementary medicine
NOTE: There is not always an either-or in the field of healing, self-help, and family help, but quite often more a both-and. That is to say, mature family help of "alternative ways" of healing are seen as complementary to standard medicine and diagnosis. It is good to bear that point firmly in mind to get benefit as fit.
Many are taught that homeopathic preparations contain only sugar, and as such work solely as placebos (fools' medicine). As for placebos, if they help, they help. A placebo (from Latin, 'I please' or 'I shall please'), is a fake medicine, for example plain sugar. "The placebo effect is the measurable, observable, or felt improvement in health or behavior not attributable to a medication or treatment that has been administered," says Robert Carrol, author of The Skeptic's Dictionary. He also says:
Studies have shown that placebos are effective in 50 or 60 percent of subjects with certain conditions, e.g., "pain, depression, some heart ailments, gastric ulcers and other stomach complaints." And, as effective as the new psychotropic drugs seem to be in the treatment of various brain disorders, some researchers maintain that there is not adequate evidence from studies to prove that the new drugs are more effective than placebos. (Robert T. Carroll. The Skeptic's Dictionary (On-line), "placebo").
Truly, the dominant or overriding substance of "those white pellets and pills" is sugar, and placebos do work. But it is not the main point here. Common homeopathic preparations of "potencies" above D6 and c6 - and for most flower essences as well - contain no physiologically effective substances, health authorities are sure of. Further, such remedies are hardly "energised" either, by standing in the sun for a few hours or by being shaken violently several thousand or million times.
Many common attempts at explanations of how homeopathy works must be wrong, and not only awkward. But where results of such preparations are forthcoming in practice, the soundest thing to do is to check the studies and ponder on how to adjust the explanations of the possible workings accordingly. I have done that.
One possible way out
What could be at work in standard homeopathic preparations and such flower essences? Some say nothing, others, who have dropped the obviously faulty and handed-over attempts at explantions that are referred to above, are at a loss. Some - like the Norwegian doctor Vilhelm Schelderup (1980) look to studies of how water molecules appear to be able to store information in some cases, and that may be a fine way out. In such an explanation, water becomes the carrier of subtle information - subtle in the sense that you may not see it. The information serves as an influence in a body. And to the degree this is so, it may engender some influences that aid in restoring harmony in the total organism from deep down or within - much as faith and placebo is said to effect betterment and even cures in many cases.
Potentised preparations may carry thought influences of a sort. Further, in potencies above ca. c8 they have neither physiological nor energetic effects; that much is sure. I look on them as deep thought representations.
A Norwegian doctor, Vilhelm Schelderup, discusses how to tackle essential remedies at length in his book Nytt lys på medisinen (New Light on Medicine) (Oslo: Cappelen, 1989.)
Dr. Vilhelm Schelderup asks what the homeopathic factor that arises in the solvent (carrier) is. How is it transferred by a series of homeopathic dilutions? How does it influence a living organism?
In the homeopathic process of shaking and dilution (called succusion) there is an explicated order represented by the chemical substance that is present at the beginning of the process of dilution. And in the homeopathic solvent there maya rise some implicated order - a sort of impression, that is.
The implications may be stepped up by degrees through succusions, and this, says Schelderup, corresponds very well with the physicist David Bohm's theory of implicated order, in that Bohm speaks of implication in successive steps that lead to implication in a higher degree. Hence, referring to Bohms theori one may even define a homeopathic preparation as an implication of the explicated matter that went into the process to begin with. Homeopathic potencies correspond to levels of implications in such a scenario. (258)
What Schelderup calls the homeopathic factor relates to the solvent, and not the substance (molecules) of the matter that is subjected to homeopathic potensation. Somehow information sides to the material are absorbed by the carrier (solvent), and such informative sides may in turn affect a living organism, he considers.
Due to its inner physical structure water seems to be an excellent medium of coherent excitations (211ff) And information - ie. informative aspects of matter - is a fundamental concept in science today, en par with matter and energy. Norbert Wiener said already in 1948 that "information is information, not matter or energy." (255) 
Schelderup goes on to say that a method - in this case a complementary healing system, really - may serve full well, independent of the belief and faith of the practitioner. Further, if what he calls the homeopathic factor is caused by structural changes in the solvent, one should be able to document it by physical methods, and that has been done in some measure. (15; 255-56) ◊
So, Dr Schelderup suggests that we may understand the effect of homeopathy in the light of modern information theory about how some information pattern can be transferred from one medium (carrier) to another, without losing its information value. 
In this scenario and by such terms we may understand a disease as implicated disorder or "implicated disinformation" which is explicated [manifested] through tangible symptoms. ◊
A long-lasting or chronic disease usually implies a deeper implication of the disease in the organism, than a short-lasting disease or trouble. A chronic disease also involves that the organism is unable to heal itself. It is supposed that in such a case the disease has "struck root" so deeply - has reached such a level that the ability of self-healing has been damaged or subdued. To heal such a disease, we have to get to a just as deep or even still deeper or subtler level of implication in the organism to make it "shake off" its diseases over a period of time.
In ways that are similar to those sketched above, Schelderup tries to explain the effects of homeopathic preparations, which in very many cases are diluted (potentized) to such an extent that there are no molecules left of the substances that went into the preparation to begin with. To claim that such dilutions have direct physiological effects does not conform with basic laws of chemistry and physics, Schelderup righty holds. (252)
The founder of homeopathy, the German pharmacists Samuel Hahnemann, defined the homeopathic factor as something "spiritual" which may in turn change man's state of health, and this "spiritual" element lies hidden in the inner aspects of the preparations. (256) 
To the question, "Do you really believe in homeopathy?" one should perhaps retort that it looks rational and meaningful in the light of David Bohm's theory of implicated order.
How useful homeopathy may show itself to be, is revealed only empirically. It has stood its ground for two hundred years today. (260)
In some cases the substances that are used to make homeopathic preparations, are not considered pharmacologically interesting in the first place. Common foods are among these. And the preparations are so dilited that they do not contain any chemical substance other than that of the carrier (solvent). (253, 250) ◊
Yet, to the degree that homeopathy really helps, it is solid, basic understanding of its main workings that is lacking (259, 256 etc.).
Dr Schelderup thinks that dilutions implicate order. To legimitate such a view or make it seem plausible, he draws on concepts of information theory and a theory of David Bohm. He also thinks the organism seeks to get rid of its diseases up to a point, doing what it is capable of, that is, and that matter-free homeopathic influences may assist in restoring deeper balances to some degree, for a short or longer time, depending on many things.
It should be added to this that the choice of preparations is not at random. Homeopathic works have been designed to assist the choosing of "proper remedies". Such works are called materia medicas.
Homeopatic preparations appear to work in practice - it might be good to adjust to that
You can be allied with good faith and confidence, of course, but homeopaths and those who administer flower essences, claim more is at work that that. There is much hold in such claims: An American proponent of homeopathy, Dana Ullman (1951-) has gathered information about troubles and diseases that homeopathic preparations appear to have helped against. He sums up, after explaining that a "meta-analysis" "is a systematic review of a body of research that evaluates the overall results of experiments":
In 1991, three professors of medicine from the Netherlands, none of them homeopaths, performed a meta-analysis of 25 years of clinical studies using homeopathic medicines and published their results in the British Medical Journal. This meta-analysis covered 107 controlled trials, of which 81 showed that homeopathic medicines were effective, 24 showed they were ineffective, and 2 were inconclusive.
There is also research that tells a very different tale, and Carroll sums up thus: "More than 100 studies have failed to come to any definitive positive conclusions about homeopathic potions. Ramey (2000) notes that
Homeopathy has been the subject of at least 12 scientific reviews, including meta-analytic studies, published since the mid-1980s....[And] the findings are remarkably consistent: . . . homeopathic "remedies" are not effective."
Opinions differ, also opinions of scientists and about what to make out of recent research findings.
The selected homeopathic preparations and Bach essences represent just a fraction of what is possible to include, theoretically speaking. National Geographics says,
To date, taxonomists have identified less than two million distinct species, mostly mammals and birds. But it's estimated that the number of undiscovered species - primarily fish, fungi, insects, and microbes - ranges from ten million to more than one hundred million. Even at the low estimate, it's an enormous number.
Bacteria.................................................... 4,000 species
A study released in the journal Science in November, 2002, estimated that there are 310,000 to 422,000 plant species on Earth and that between 22 to 47 percent are in danger of becoming extinct. Just a fraction of the known species have gone into homeopathic preparations. Many other species - especially in the world's rainforests and in the oceans - are unknown to man yet. Also, in addition come elements, minerals and other compounds to devise homeopatic preparations from. In addition to all that, it is possible to furnish preparations from different parts of a species or animal. Hence the two preparations "Honeybee" and "Honey with salt". Both exist.
How many of the possible species and variations have been "found to work" through homeopathic tests? Very few. Adjusting to the estimate of 20 million species - a quite low estimate - and also to the fact that just a few thousand homeopathic preparations and Bach-like flower essences exist yet, we may suggest that many thousand times more preparations could be added. To the degree that the effect of homeopathic treatment depends on searching out a fit remedy, which is considered to act as a "great hit" versus the disease symptoms, such a comparative scantiness of homeopathic remedies counts too., even thouh very few practitioners seem to be concerned about it.
This is to say that today's range of homeopathic remedies is awfully limited, which should be accepted as a fact and not forgotten: In homeopathy it is claimed that the effect of a cure depends on what substance (mineral, plant, body or body part(s) that went into it the homeopathic preparation(s) that are administered.
So, there is room for further development of new homeopathic remedies, and of concoctions of remedies too.
Other problems and nuances of problems
That a homeopathic preparation is "proven" and listen in books does not mean the provings are true in all respects. As Carroll observes, many potentised preparations have not been systematically tesed for effectiveness on sick people, but on healthy people (The Skeptic's Dictionary, sv. 'homeopathy'). Also, they do not conform to standard methods of medicine, which approves of so-called double-blind tests. Such tests are largely missing in homeopathy. This does not mean that what is listen as symptoms related to any preparation is false or wrong, but it implies the testings of homeopathic remedies from earlier generations in particular, are quite at fault, or that the findings or provings are not generally accepted in the scientific community.
It is also a problem when chosen homeopathic preparations do not work, even though they seemed to fit the symptoms nicely. Traditional homeopathy has sought to explain (away) those problems by speaking of inhereted blockages called miasms, and much else. Generally, most practitioners switch to ordaining other remedies (and next others, and still others) in such failures of the art or trade. In some books the phenomenon is indicated by stating that the said effects of remedies can be counteracted by coffee and other substances, and even other homeopathic preparations. There is hardly a shred of solid evidence of these assertions, however. If so, where is it?
Depending a bit on just how they are prepared and stored, the preparations seem to differ too.
As mentioned above, different books that list symptoms related to the homeopathic preparations, do not agree in all respects.
Some preparations have been more used by others, and as a result have gathered many more symptoms - rightly or wrongly put there.
One should consider to what degree other and theoretically possible symptoms go undetected even in the case of "well-proven" homeopathic preparations.
In looking for key symptoms for selecting a homeopathic preparations in any one case, what are listed as notable symptoms may or may not be flawed, many key symptoms may be lacking - and that is the lay of the land in general.
Boericke, William, and Oscar Boericke. Homoeopathic Materia Medica. 9th ed. Philadelphia: Boericke and Runyon, 1927 (and later editions).
Carroll, Robert T. ◦The Skeptic's Dictionary. 1994-2011. Online.
Clarke, John Henry. A Dictionary of Practical Materia Medica. Bradford: Health Science Press, 1977.
Kent, James Tyler. ◦Lectures on Homoeopathic Materia Medica. Export reprint ed. New Delhi: B. Jain, 2005.
Lindahl, Olof, and Lindwall, Lars: Vetenskap och beprövad erfarenhet (Science and Proven Experience). Stockholm: Natur och Kultur, 1978. ⍽▢⍽ The research designs for investigating the efficacy of therapeutical methods and medicines in established and unconventional medicine is discussed, and the possible value of the placebo effect in medical treatment is emphasised.
Rae, Malcolm. "Homoeopathy up to Date." Journal of the Research Society for Natural Therapeutics. Spring 1977.
Schelderup, Vilhelm. Legekunsten på nye veier: akupunktur - biofysikk - helhetsmedisin. Oslo: Cappelen, 1980.
Schelderup, Vilhelm. Nytt lys på medisinen. Oslo: Cappelen, 1989.
Ullman, Dana. The Consumer's Guide to Homeopathy. New York: Tarcher / Putnam, 1995.
User's Guide ᴥ Disclaimer |
© 2001–2018, Tormod Kinnes, MPhil [Email]