The Kentian Call of the Constitutional Remedy

runner - constitutional

constitutional: a walk or a run, ultimately bringing you back to where you started…

The Kentian Call of the Constitutional Remedy

A theory of everything (ToE) or final theory, ultimate theory, or master theory is a hypothetical single, all-encompassing, coherent theoretical framework of physics that fully explains and links together all physical aspects of the universe. (Steven Weinberg. Dreams of a Final Theory: The Scientist’s Search for the Ultimate Laws of Nature. Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group.)  (thank you, Wikipedia…)

It seems to be an inherently human thing. We constantly look for the answer to everything. And in some quirk of our magical, mystical, and ultimately superstitious thinking, we fall in with the “theory of everything” tribe and assume that as in life, so in homoeopathy, there must be ONE solution, or in Kent’s words, one simple substance, that will unlock the case, the universe and everything.

We are surrounded by the concept. If you only take Vitamin C, your life will turn around. All you need for health is this drink, which contains trace nutrients from every healthgiving substance on the planet.  This instrument  can cure every problem you have by passing it over the body…   the race towards the number 42* is constant and unending…

(*42 – the solution to everything, as posited by the late great Douglas Adams)

And homoeopaths spend a lot of time hunting the snark – sorry, the constitutional… the single remedy which will unlock the patient’s entire life, past, present and future, the single remedy which we constantly go back to once we return from the rocky road of acutes, intercurrents, intermittents and basically, interruptions… The constitutional is the safe haven of prescribing, if not much has changed, if it helped in the past, if we have defined it as the constitutional, well… search no more…  And thus, instead of  more focused casetaking to search for changes, and for remedies that provide more similarities to the patient’s presenting disease state in front of us, students of homoeopathy are taught to return to the fabled constitutional, with its single horn and mythical, magical aura, to follow paradisaical theories taking us through to the patient’s distant past and prior incarnations…

It is the elusive constitutional that will lead to the spectacular cures, we are told, the constitutional that will unlock the secrets of the patient’s personality and pathology, and that will, of course, bring the homoeopath a nice reputation as a master healer, holder of the constitutional keys to the universe.

But what about sick humanity sighing for relief? Will theories bring them help, resolve the issues they are dealing with now? In constitutional practice, all too often we see the following:

Patient: doctor, my headaches are still as bad as ever!
Homoeopath: but how are you sleeping?
Patient: Oh, I’m sleeping much better, I got this new mattress, you see… and it’s very comfort-
Homoeopath: (turning to class, audience, bowing to imaginary applause…) See how much better the patient is doing? His sleep is improving, his skin tone looks much better…
Patient: but…the headaches…
Homoeopath: you understand, we have to go far back into your past, to the time twenty years ago when you stopped sleeping properly, in order to begin helping your system heal the headaches.

Homoeopath: to the world: that is the magic of homoeopathy, we heal the person, not the disease … (fade out)

I think many of you are familiar with this. I know I am. It’s a commonly found element in most homoeopathy teaching today. But the patients come to us to cure the headaches, the stomach issues, the DISEASE STATE. If we’re doing our work the way we should be, the main complaint and related symptoms, especially the elements which have changed and which are peculiar to our patient, are our chief focus. These symptoms are the symptoms of the disease totality. We are not required to make our patients nicer people, more considerate of others, more assertive, more able to handle their parents, siblings, co-workers, spouses, children, and more. We are required, as homoeopaths, to treat the disease totality, the expression of the disease in the individual patient. We are required to seek prescribing symptoms which can lead us to remedies to treat the disease state.   Not to chase after some “ur-remedy”, the homoeopath’s alchemical gold, the cure-all constitutional…

And instead, Kentian training sends would-be homoeopaths out a-hunting, the snark, the snitch, the apple from the garden of Eden, the Constitutional, and other mythical creatures

It would be wise to remember the other meaning of constitutional: a walk or a run, on a circuitous route, good for healthy movement perhaps but ultimately bringing you back to where you started…


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