§ 69 Fifth Edition

In the antipathic (palliative) mode of treatment, however precisely the reverse of this takes place. The medicinal symptom which the physician opposes to the disease symptom (for example, the insensibility and stupefaction caused by opium in its primary action to acute pain) is certainly not alien, not allopathic of the latter; there is a manifest relation of the medicinal symptom to the disease symptom, but it is the reverse of what should be; it is here intended that the annihilation of the disease symptom shall be effected by an opposite medicinal symptom, which is impossible. No doubt the antipathically chosen medicine touches precisely the same diseased point in the organism as the homoeopathic medicine chosen on account of the similar affection it produces; but the former covers the opposite symptom of the disease only as an opposite, and makes it unobservable for a short time only, so that in the first period of the action of the antagonistic palliative the vital force perceives nothing disagreeable from either if the two (neither from the disease symptom nor from the medicinal symptom), as they seem both to have mutually removed and dynamically neutralized one another as it were (for example, the stupefying power of opium does this to the pain). In the first minutes the vital force feels quite well, and perceives neither the stupefaction of the opium nor the pain of the disease. But as the antagonistic medicinal symptom cannot (as in the homoeopathic treatment) occupy the place of the morbid derangement present in the organism as a similar, stronger (artificial) disease, and cannot, therefore, like a homoeopathic medicine, affect the vital force with a similar artificial disease, so as to be able to step into the place of the original natural morbid derangement, the palliative medicine must, as a thing totally differing from, and the opposite of the disease derangement, leave the latter uneradicated; it renders it, as before said, by a semblance of dynamic neutralization,1 at first unfelt by the vital force, but, like every medicinal disease, it is soon spontaneously extinguished, and not only leaves the disease behind, just as it was, but compels the vital force (as it must, like all palliatives, be given in large doses in order to effect the apparent removal) to produce an opposite condition (§§ 63,64) to this palliative medicine, the reverse of the medicinal action, consequently the analogue of the still present, undestroyed, natural morbid derangement, which is necessarily strengthened and increased2 by this addition (reaction against the palliative) produced by the vital force. The disease symptom (this single part of the disease) consequently becomes worse after the term of the action of the palliative has expired; worse in proportion to the magnitude of the dose of the palliative. Accordingly (to keep to the same example) the larger the dose of opium given to allay the pain, so much the more does the pain increase beyond its original intensity as soon as the opium has exhausted its action.3

1 In the living human being no permanent neutralization of contrary or antagonistic sensations can take place, as happens with substances of opposite qualities in the chemical laboratory, where, for instance, sulphuric acid and potash unite to form a perfectly different substance, a neutral salt, which is now no longer either acid or alkali, and is not decomposed even by heat. Such amalgamations and thorough combinations to form something permanently neutral and indifferent do not, as has been said, ever take place with respect to dynamic impressions of an antagonistic nature in our sensific apparatus. Only a semblance of neutralization and mutual removal occurs in such cases at first, but the antagonistic sensations do not permanently remove one another. The tears of the mourner will be dried for but a short time by a laughable play; the jokes are, however, soon forgotten, and his tears then flow still more abundantly than before.

2 Plain as this proposition is, it has been misunderstood, and in opposition to it some have asserted that the palliative in its secondary action, would then be similar to the disease present, must be capable of curing just as well as a homoeopathic medicine does by its primary action. But they did not reflect that the secondary action is not a product of the medicine, but invariably of the antagonistically acting vital force of the organism; that therefore this secondary action resulting from the vital force on the employment of a palliative is a state similar to the symptoms of the disease which the palliative left uneradicated, and which the reaction of the vital force against the palliative consequently increased still more.

3 As when in a dark dungeon, where the prisoner could with difficulty recognize objects close to him, alcohol is suddenly lighted, everything is instantly illuminated in a most consolatory manner to the unhappy wretch; but when it is extinguished, the brighter the flame was previously the blacker is the night which now envelopes him, and renders everything about him much more difficult to be seen than before.

§ 69 Sixth Edition

In the antipathic (palliative) mode of treatment, however precisely the reverse of this takes place. The medicinal symptom which the physician opposes to the disease symptom (for example, the insensibility and stupefaction caused by opium in its primary action to acute pain) is certainly not alien, not allopathic of the latter; there is a manifest relation of the medicinal symptom to the disease symptom, but it is the reverse of what should be; it is here intended that the annihilation of the disease symptom shall be effected by an opposite medicinal symptom, which is nevertheless impossible. No doubt the antipathically chosen medicine touches precisely the same diseased point in the organism as the homoeopathic medicine chosen on account of the similar affection it produces; but the former covers the opposite symptom of the disease only as an opposite, and makes it unobservable to our life principle for a short time only, so that in the first period of the action of the antagonistic palliative the vital force perceives nothing disagreeable from either if the two (neither from the disease symptom nor from the medicinal symptom), as they seem both to have mutually removed and dynamically neutralized one another as it were (for example, the stupefying power of opium does this to the pain). In the first minutes the vital force feels quite well, and perceives neither the stupefaction of the opium nor the pain of the disease. But as the antagonistic medicinal symptom cannot (as in the homoeopathic treatment) occupy the place of the morbid derangement present in the organism in the sensation of the life principle as a similar, stronger (artificial) disease, and cannot, therefore, like a homoeopathic medicine, affect the vital force with a similar artificial disease, so as to be able to step into the place of the original natural morbid derangement, the palliative medicine must, as a thing totally differing from, and the opposite of the disease derangement, leave the latter uneradicated; it renders it, as before said, by a semblance of dynamic neutralization,1 at first unfelt by the vital force, but, like every medicinal disease, it is soon spontaneously extinguished, and not only leaves the disease behind, just as it was, but compels the vital force (as it must, like all palliatives, be given in large doses in order to effect the apparent removal) to produce an opposite condition (§§ 63,64) to this palliative medicine, the reverse of the medicinal action, consequently the analogue of the still present, undestroyed, natural morbid derangement, which is necessarily strengthened and increased2 by this addition (reaction against the palliative) produced by the vital force. The disease symptom (this single part of the disease) consequently becomes worse after the term of the action of the palliative has expired; worse in proportion to the magnitude of the dose of the palliative. Accordingly (to keep to the same example) the larger the dose of opium given to allay the pain, so much the more does the pain increase beyond its original intensity as soon as the opium has exhausted its action.3

1 In the living human being no permanent neutralization of contrary or antagonistic sensations can take place, as happens with substances of opposite qualities in the chemical laboratory, where, for instance, sulphuric acid and potash unite to form a perfectly different substance, a neutral salt, which is now no longer either acid or alkali, and is not decomposed even by heat. Such amalgamations and thorough combinations to form something permanently neutral and indifferent do not, as has been said, ever take place with respect to synamic impressions of an antagonistic nature in our sensific apparatus. Only a semblance of neutralization and mutual removal occurs in such cases at first, but the antagonistic sensations do not permanently remove one another. The tears of the mourner will be dried for but a short time by a laughable play; the jokes are, however, soon forgotten, and his tears then flow still more abundantly than before.

2 Plain as this proposition is, it has been misunderstood, and in opposition to it some have asserted that the palliative in its secondary action, would then be similar to the disease present, must be capable of curing just as well as a homoeopathic medicine does by its primary action. But they did not reflect that the secondary action is not a product of the medicine, but invariably of the antagonistically acting vital force of the organism; that therefore this secondary action resulting from the vital force on the employment of a palliative is a state similar to the symptoms of the disease which the palliative left uneradicated, and which the reaction of the vital force against the palliative consequently increased still more.

3 As when in a dark dungeon, where the prisoner could with difficulty recognize objects close to him, alcohol is suddenly lighted, everything is instantly illuminated in a most consolatory manner to the unhappy wretch; but when it is extinguished, the brighter the flame was previously the blacker is the night which now envelopes him, and renders everything about him much more difficult to be seen than before.

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