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The Trial

Rudi Verspoor, residing in Ottawa, Canada is charged by the classical homeopathic authorities with a number of counts of character assassination of Classical Homeopathy and of the misuse of the good name of Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, of attempting to steal the word homeopathy for his own purpose, of bringing forth a revolution in classical homeopathy, plus sundry other minor charges.

Prosecution: Is it true that you have only been practising homeopathy for 10 years?

Defence: Yes.

Prosecution: Is it true that you are a politician?

Defence: No, that is not true. I have never been a politician.

Prosecutor: But you ran for the office of President of a homeopathic professional association, did you not?

Defence: Yes, and I was elected by the membership. And the point is?

Prosecution: You established a political organisation in support of your theories, did you not?

Defence: You are referring to the homeopathic professional association, are you not? Is it a crime to establish an association? Does that mean that anyone who establishes a homeopathic professional organisation is open to the charge that they are doing it only for their own ends? This would be news to all those who have established such associations, presumably in good faith.

Will charges be pending against them as well?

Prosecution: But you use it to further your own ends, do you not?

Defence: Am I dreaming? The association is for the advancement of the teachings of Hahnemann. Is it a crime to wish to do so?

Prosecution: But does it not promote ST?

Defence: No, it does not. That would be a surprise to the members!

Prosecution: It is charged that you wish to steal the name homeopathy. What do you have to say on this?

Defence: Can one steal a word? Does the use of a word constitute theft? Does anyone have a monopoly on a word? How can I use a word if its use constitutes theft? How can I defend myself? If what I have to say is true, then what has anyone to fear? If what I say about homeopathy is not true, then it will fall of itself. Homeopathy will remain, in any case. It does not belong to any one group, regardless of what the beliefs of that group may be.

Prosecution: You are charged with fomenting a revolution in homeopathy. Is this true?

Defence: I plead guilty to asking questions and putting forward what I have learned from my studies and practice. Is asking questions or expressing ideas a crime? Is the act of doing so a revolution? If so, then science is revolutionary. Is science to be charged, too? I understand that revolutions occur because the establishment is more interested in suppressing honest dissent than in understanding it.

Prosecution: It is charged that no one can know what Hahnemann thought or what the Organon says without years of study and practice.

Defence: And the charge against me is...?

Prosecution: How can you bring forward these revolutionary ideas and condemn classical homeopathy with so little experience? Are you not aware that classical homeopathy is Hahnemannian homeopathy?

Defence: I am aware of no such thing. How much experience must I have before I can bring forward such ideas? Is there a probationary period for the truth?

There are two issues you are raising. The first is that the truth of an idea is directly related to the length of time spent studying and practising. The second is that classical homeopathy is the same as Hahnemann's complete medical system.

Let's take the first. How many years must one practice and study before he or she can put forward a new idea? Is it 10 years, 15 years, 20 years? If any of these, on what basis do you decide the exact number of years? Is knowledge a function only of age and experience?or of insight and realization? Perhaps Hahnemann should have tried allopathy longer and studied it more carefully before he made his judgement (in medical school) that it was false.

In any case, let me grant your argument that we should take experience as the measure of the truth. Then we need to look to the person who has had the most experience and throw out or burn all of the other books written by those with less experience (because their ideas will be less valuable). Who has had the most experience? Isn't it Dr. Hahnemann himself? Sixty years after his rebuke of allopathy. So, we should all immediately study his works and practice? That is what I have done. I went to the source and read all his own recommended works.

Let's now take your second point. You assert that classical homeopathy is the same as true Hahnemannian homeopathy. But I have to ask, what is classical homeopathy? Who gave it this name? This is a term that implies that it is a subset of homeopathy. Either something is homeopathy or it is not.

Prosecution: You are trying to confuse the issue. We are talking about Hahnemann's homeopathy. To practice the Homeopathy of Hahnemann one must follow the principles of the Organon. This includes like cures like, the totality of symptoms, the single remedy and the minimal dose. *This is what we call classical homeopathy, to distinguish it from the other forms that try to pass themselves off as the "real" homeopathy or teaching of Hahnemann.

Defence: I see. However, it remains to be seen that what you call classical homeopathy is the same as the medical system that Hahnemann outlined for us in his works. Hahnemann himself says to use characteristic symptoms and the minimum suitable dosage. However, I agree that we must look to the principles of the Organon to determine what homeopathy is and what it is not. Let's do that. I submit that the main law of homeopathy is similar resonance.

As evidence I give you the declaration that Hahnemann wrote in 1833 (and agreed by all homeopaths in Germany on 11 August 1833 at their Congress) on the main "pillars" of homeopathy. Here, he only mentions strict and unqualified adherence to the law of similars.

There is no mention of the others you have raised. When Hahnemann was applying the law of similars using crude doses, would you say he was not practising homeopathy? And what does the minimum dose mean? You have stated a tenet, but how do you apply it?

Prosecution: I am supposed to be asking the questions. The minimum dose is no more than is necessary to cure the case.

Defence: So what is the charge against me?

Prosecution: First, you use potencies up to 10M centesimal. This is not Hahnemannian homeopathy.

Defence: Yes, I admit I use potencies that high and occasionally even higher. What level should I be using? Is there some level that is required for it to be Hahnemannian homeopathy? Or, are you saying that only those who prescribe LM potencies are true Hahnemannian homeopaths? This leaves out a lot of people who claim they are homeopaths, including Kent

Prosecution: We will have to clarify the charge your honour. I will consult with my authorities. Let me now go on to another charge. You are charged with saying you are teaching about Hahnemann's therapeutic system, Heilkunst, but you are really teaching about ST, the ST of Dr. Elmiger. You are requested to clarify that you are really teaching the ST of Dr. Elmiger at these seminars and not to confuse the public. What do you have to say in your defence?

Defence: Your charge condemns a priori. It assumes that the methods of Dr. Elmiger are not part of Hahnemann's complete medical system and this creates a Catch 22. I cannot set forth my ideas that they are linked because this is said to be wrong. How can I defend myself if my position is taken to be wrong a priori? This is like the allopaths saying that homeopathy cannot work because it is false and refusing to test it or listen to arguments to the contrary.

Prosecution: We have shown that the tenets of classical homeopathy are the same as Hahnemann's homeopathy and that ST does not follow them.

Defence: I respectfully submit that you have shown nothing of the kind. You have asserted the position but refuse to debate the merits. Instead you condemn what I have to say without listening to what it is that I have to say.

Prosecution: Do you deny that you have written about and used the methods of ST established by Dr. Elmiger?

Defence: No, I wholeheartedly acknowledge my debt to Dr. Elmiger for having revealed to me an aspect of Hahnemann's medical system hitherto uncovered, but my practice and theory are not bound by this. My studies and practice reveal that Hahnemann's complete remedial system contains a sequential approach to chronic disease. This cannot be denied by anyone who looks at the evidence. This can be seen in Aphorisms 206-209 among many others.

Prosecution: So you admit that you use Dr. Elmiger's ST.

Defence: I use a sequential approach for the remediation of chronic disease, yes, but within a much larger scope of application than Elmiger.

Prosecution: But you must cease misleading people about your seminars.

Defence: What is misleading? I say that the seminar is about Hahnemann's complete remedial system and also about the sequential treatment of chronic disease. The only ones misled seem to be those who assume, without having heard the evidence presented at a seminar, that the two are mutually exclusive. They are entitled to this opinion, of course, but why do they insist on imposing their views on others and demanding that I cease in my views. This is a free country is it not? Am I not to be tried on the basis of the evidence before I am judged?

Prosecutor: Your Honour, let me proceed with the next charge. The Defence is on record as having said that classical homeopathy has never cured anything. This is clearly absurd in the face of thousands of cured cases by classical homeopaths with at least 5-year follow-up.

Defence: First, let me clarify. I am quoted as saying that "constitutional prescribing can't cure anything." Are you now suggesting that constitutional prescribing is the same as classical homeopathy? If so, you said it, not me.

Prosecutor: Granted your clarification, how can you still assert that "constitutional prescribing can't cure anything"?

Defence: The statement depends on the definition of cure. We would have to go into the fundamental distinction in the Organon between what Hahnemann called the Lebens-Erhaltungskraft and the Lebens- Erzeugungskraft. This is nowhere treated of or understood in the classical literature. One involves the healing function of the life force and the other involves the cure of disease. Unless a remedy acts on the aspect that cures, it cannot cure. It may be able to help the healing function heal, but it cannot cure.

We would also have to go into the definition of constitution. I have never seen an adequate one in the classical literature. It is usually everything and therefore, nothing. However, let us go to one of those experienced homeopaths you are so fond of, one with over 40 years of study and practice, Dr. Eizayaga. In his Treatise on Homeopathic Principles and Practice, p. 239, 261,264 he states that the true constitutional remedy (what he aptly labels the genotype) cannot cure anything. So, if you will not take it from me, take it from him. Are his books to be banned now also, his teaching proscribed, or are his statements more acceptable because they have more experience behind them? And is Dr. Sankaran's long family history of experience to be discounted also when he prescribes on principle vs. tradition?

Prosecution: You are jesting.

Defence: I am not jesting. I am serious. It is you who raised the charge of experience and the suggestion that the truth of a proposition is dependent on experience.

Prosecution: But can you deny the thousands of cured cases? Acts speak louder than words.

Defence: I am prepared to grant you your thousands of cured cases, even though I have not seen proof of them and even though you have not defined cure beyond 5 years of remission. This seems very much like the allopathic definition of cure in cancer cases. What of those cases in the literature where the patient was cured and then later died of cancer or some other illness? Are these cases of cure of single diseases or of the whole patient, including all the miasms and delusions? But what of the hundreds of thousands of uncured cases, the ones that didn't work? You may be content with the few that were cured using your classical methods, but I am concerned with the many more that are not helped.

I, too, can cite many cured cases. That they are cured cases seems not to be denied by those who have seen them.

Prosecution: What is denied is that the methods used are homeopathy.

Defence: Yet, by definition, a cure must involve the use of the main pillar of homeopathy, the law of similar resonance, but applied according to the subprinciples laid down in the Organon for each dimension of disease.

Prosecution: You have not used the other principles of homeopathy — the single remedy and the totality of symptoms.

Defence: I am glad to see that you have dropped the charge relating to the minimal dose. First, these are not principles, but tenets. Where is the evidence that I have not used the totality of characteristic symptoms per disease? Bring that forward before I can answer the charge properly.

Prosecution: I will take that under advisement. Do you deny that you have violated the principle of the single remedy?

Defence: Again, please clarify what the charge is so that I may be able to properly reply. Do you mean one remedy at a time? If so, what do you mean by time? I presume you are referring to Aphorism 273 of the 6th Edition of the Organon? Can you clarify which part I have supposedly violated? The section referring to one remedy at a time per patient or one remedy at a time per disease?

Prosecution: I will take this up with my authorities. I have one final charge at this time to raise. It is said that you think what homeopaths are doing is suppression.

Defence: I have never said anything of the kind. It is ironic, because classical homeopathy often criticises the giving of remedies as constituting suppression. This is not a term Hahnemann uses, nor I, in the giving of remedies on a homeopathic basis (that is by similarity to the disease). I have said that classical homeopathy is palliative at best, but never that it is suppressive.

Have you any other charges? The day has been long and I have to continue my work.

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