"JOURNEY OF THE MASTER’S LIFE"
Words Of The Master:
“For Gold the test by fire is made
True rings the steel of perfect blade:
From poisons healing droughts are riven:
Ships prove their worth when tempest driven.
The soldier’s heart’s revealed in fight:
The maiden’s chastity by night:
While friendship’s test will ever be:
The touchstone of adversity.”
- Dr. Hahnemann
Born on 10th of April 1755, in Messein, to “Christian Gottfried Hahnemann”, a painter in the porcelain factory and “ Johanna Christiana Born Speiss”. He was named “Christian Freidreich Samuel Hahnemann.” What great soles they both were to have brought to life such an “Immortal Healer Of The Suffering”. With him even they would always be remembered till human kind exists. To read and write about a life like his is easy “To Live It Is Not” but he came out shining and bright with such a wonderful contribution to the Millions Of Suffering Humans. He belonged not to a very well to do family with, less resources and many people to cater to and still he discovered a WONDER.
The question that arises is that “How Was This Possible?” The earliest education is most important. The education of man begins at his birth. And very truly the credit goes first and foremost to his father. The painter, before going to work, frequently put his son in a room with closed shutters left not with toys but with a difficult sentence to think over, of which some account had to be given later. This definitely enhanced Dr. Hahnemann’s ability to think with “ Originality” and this reasoning capability finally led him to “Discover Homoeopathy”. Even when his father used to go on walks he used to remark: “I must go home now, I have a lesson to give to my son Samuel, “A Lesson In Thinking”. This was the Best Gift he could give to his son.
And yet in the later years his son had nothing critical to say about his father as this led him a long way.
It is rightly said that we reflect our parents and upbringing. In Dr. Hahnemann’s life this is true too: - for his father “To Live And Act Without Pretence Or Show Was His Most Noteworthy Precept”. He was present always though often unobserved in body and soul whenever any good was to be done. So was true for Dr. Hahnemann. Once he met a lady of high rank in a hotel; the landlady neglected the fire while attending to the guests and the whole house was on a blaze. Humans, selfish as we all are, everybody thought of his own safety forgetting about the women in the upper apartment. But the Selfless, Courageous and Humanitarian Dr. Hahnemann ran right through the flames and saved the lady. When satisfied about her safety he drove away. His reward was the “Satisfaction” of being able to save a precious human life. Later in life, when he was “ father of four children” he “ encountered all risk and was the means of extinguishing a dreadful fire which had broken up”
It was his Insight, Conscience, Purity, Love and Value he attached to all living beings that led to the “SCIENCE OF INDIVIDUALIZATION” where in what is precious is “YOU” as a person.
After the sad demise of his father, he penned a tribute to his father in an autobiography where he says: -
“In his actions he discriminated with the utmost nicety between the Nobel and the base and with a correctness that showed how truly admirable was practical delicacy of his feelings. In this he was my teacher his ideas on the foundation laws of universe, on dignity of mankind and its lofty destiny, seemed consistent in every way with his habits of living. This gave me the Direction Of My Inner Life”.
In no better words than these could he have expressed his gratitude and respect towards the person who made him a GEM to be TREASURED.
This was about his “Moral Training”. His “Mental Training” was also not so easy. Due to limited resources his father did not wish him to study at all and repeatedly took him from public school for a whole year so that he might pursue some other business to support his father’s income. But great thanks to Master Muller who loved him as his own child and allowed him liberties in the way of study. At twelve years of age he allowed Dr. Hahnemann to assist younger scholars in their endeavours with Greek. At that time even Master Muller would not have realized that this little boy’s early aptitude for languages would lead to subsequent mastery of French, English, Greek, Hebrew, Arabic and Spanish in addition to a peculiar force and fluency in German.
His teachers accepted not to take any fees for his education during the last eight years, which his father also did not resist.
In 1775, his father let him go to Leipzig, taking with him only 20 Thalers (currency of that state) for his support. This was the last money he received from his father’s hands. To earn his living he gave instructions in German and French and also translated books. He was less keen about reading than about digesting what was read and was careful to read little and read correctly and to classify it in his mind before reading further. Guess, this was his “Key To Success”. Along with studying he did not forget to procure his body by outdoor exercise and sprightliness and vigor by which alone continued mental exertion can be successfully endured.
He was fond of learning medicine so went to Vienna at his own expenses but he had to leave Vienna in nine months. He says that the credit of making him a “PHYSICIAN” goes entirely to Dr. Von Quarin. He was the only one of his age who was taken to visit Dr. Quarin’s private patients. He was 22 years of age at this time. Dr. Quarin introduced him to the governor of Transylvania and he was engaged as the medical advisor to the governor and officers of his household, and also allowed to practice in the township, though he didn’t yet possess the medical degree. This in itself is an indication of the extent to which Dr. Quarin must have commended his already acquired medical abilities. During his stay with the governor at Hermannstadt, he must have experienced a relaxation from financial anxiety and comfort unknown to him. In 1779, he went to “Erlangen” to become the “Qualified Physician”. The medical school in Leipzig, the most famous university in Germany, offered just lectures and book learning and no clinical experience. Even courses of training at medical university didn’t include chemistry in syllabus.
At 24 years of age, he started practicing as a qualified physician at Hettstedt, which was in his native state of Saxony, thus must have been a chief attraction for him. He wrote about epidemics and said that when they begin they are largely illnesses of isolated individuals, which could easily be subjugated; and only by carelessness and ignorance they degenerate into angels of destruction.
From time of Hippocrates till today epidemics have occupied the attention of physicians. And certainly Dr. Hahnemann must be regarded as a notable figure in this line of succession. After nine months in 1781 he went to Dessau 50 kms from Hettstedt where he met a young woman Johanna Leopoldine Henriette Kuchler whom he married. With her father during his hours of leisure Dr. Hahnemann used to work experimentally in chemistry. When he practiced in Gommern he had no sources of income except by practicing medicine of which he was aware that he didn’t know much. And it had become important that he looked for other sources of income. And thus he moved to Dresden.He stayed there for four years. At this time the support of his family was maintained by the literary work i.e the translations he did. For forty years it was his custom to sit up the whole of one night after four, working, translating, studying, writing. That he lived to a ripe age, preserving a considerable measure of strength and health is indeed surprising, for, as he himself once observed, “man (i.e the delicate human machine) is not constituted for overwork. He had five children to cater to and he too had less resources. But he was a man of worth. He knew how to manage with what he had and how to give his family the best. He there clad himself in the garb of the very poor, wore clogs of wood and helped his wife in the house and knead bread with his own hands. He used to toil all day with the translations for the press, yet frequently assisted his wife to wash clothes at night, and as they were unable to purchase soap they employed raw potatoes for the purpose. This shows clearly that he was a man who was as much dedicated to his family as he was to his profession. The balance between the two was always maintained. This was again his wisdom. He said, “ What I earn now more than suffices me! I cannot reckon much on income from practice… I am too conscientious to prolong illness, or make it appear more dangerous than it really is. Pity, or love of peace, make me reticent in my claims- I am therefore constantly the loser and I can only look upon my practice as food for the heart”. There could be no better expression of his love for humanity and the purity he had within and his beautiful conscience which always kept him on the right path and took him way ahead of others. He was strongly of the opinion that over several centuries, the God like practical medicine was reduced to a wretched breadwinning, a degrading commerce in prescriptions. He wanted a place where he could live quietly and privately and yet increase his knowledge. He wanted to be surrounded by good people and be able to bring up his children sensibly.
In 1790, while translating Cullen’s Materia Medica, he came across Peruvian bark, this drug also known as Cinchona bark was known to cure ague (malaria). He fell into such indignation at the confused attempts to explain the ways in which cinchona suppresses ague, that he got determined to make a trial of the remedy on his body. He took accordingly, at several times strong doses of cinchona, such as the physicians of the day prescribed for the sick. And to his surprise he found himself suffering from a strong paroxysm of ague! And his great reasoning powers, which were no doubt a gift of his father to him, led him to think, “Does the cinchona bark which cures ague, produce the same?” This was a ray of light to him, which formed the basis of a curative principle “SIMILIA SIMILIBUS CURANTOR” or “ LIKES CURE LIKES”. He tried a series of active substances, singly, on himself, and found his experiments confirmed by corresponding results in every case. Every remedy he tried on him brought out same symptoms, as it was known to cure. Cinchona bark was to Hahnemann what the “Falling Apple Was To Newton.”
He was strongly against the practices like blood letting and leeching going on in those days. When suffering in innumerable cases was greatly increased and the only hope to cure proved to be a defeat then for him the silence became unbearable. In 1792 a calamity made him more strongly vehement against the medical practice. Emperor Leopord of Austria was strongly ill. This monarch, by various parties in Europe was being looked to as a possible instrument in maintaining the peace between Germany and France, which was still in the throes of revolutionary experience. People had many hopes from him when suddenly every one was shattered by the news of his death. A medical bulletin had to be published in Vienna to meet the agitated curiosity in both the sides. So superficial was this report in the eyes of Dr. Hahnemann that he at once wrote a severe criticism to it in the journal Anzieger. Emperor’s doctor had tried to fight the severe fever and accompanying symptoms by venesection and when this failed he resorted to open the veins again and yet again, until blood letting had been resorted to for a fourth time. Dr. Hahnemann wrote “ according to what principle does anyone have the right to order a second venesection when the first has failed to bring relief? As for a third, Heaven help us; but to draw blood a fourth time when the three previous attempts failed to alleviate!” The doctors responsible were then challenged to give justification for such a line of treatment. For this Dr. Hahnemann was criticized as well as appreciated. It was he who left it in record that the best prepared and purest medicine should be used even for “the meanest slave, for he, too, is a man.” Once he wrote to a prince who had asked his advice on the choice of a family physician. “ Before you finally fix on him, see how he behaves to the poor, and if he occupies himself at home with some useful work.” So, he was through and through a humble and wise soul who really knew the pain of the suffering humanity and who in the true sense could empathize rather than sympathize with them like all others did. He was not materialistic and wanted to serve humanity straight from his heart.
Dr. Hahnemann had made a study of hypochondrias and insanity in particular for years. In 1792 he got the opportunity to devote himself to this kind of work. The patient referred to was recommended by the Duke, Klockenbring by name. The man was an author who was very susceptible by nature and had become insane through a malicious attack made on him, by a poet. His family physician and many others had done all that they could to cure him. But all in vain! Dr. Hahnemann for the first weeks observed him without giving any medical treatment. Then he treated him both psychically and medicinally and his illness was soon cured. At that time the view that insanity was incurable was prevalent but Dr. Hahnemann didn’t believe so, though he stressed that it might become so if improperly treated. He believed that these patients should be treated not with violent corrections, harshness, contradictions, disastrous to the mind and soul. He asked for a fee of 1000 thalers and was criticized for that by many contemporaries. But if we try and think that Klockenbring was a wealthy man and that Dr. Hahnemann gave a whole of several months to one patient, it will be apparent that the criticism was an ungenerous one. In him we find the desire to work for either nothing, little or much, according to the situation. More than once he had withdrawn entirely or almost entirely from practice because of the mistrust in the prevalent methods of treatment, for which till then he had no alternative. But year in and year out he treated 12 poor patients without a fee. They came at the same consulting hours and enjoyed the same rights as the rich patients. They were always taken in their turn and no rich man could say that he would be preferred more.
Of the spirit in which physician should pursue his work- “He knows” Hahnemann writes “ that observations of medical subjects must be made in a sincere and holy spirit, as if under the eye of the all-seeing God, the judge of our secret thoughts, and must be recorded so as to satisfy an upright conscience, in order that they may be communicated to the world, in the consciousness that no earthly good is more worthy of our zealous exertions than the preservation of life and health of our fellow creatures.”
For six years following the experiment of Cinchona bark he remained silent as to his findings. This was because he was already upset with the prevalent medical practice especially the ignorance that was involved in it. And he didn’t want any such lacunae’s to be present in his contribution to the medical world. For 18 years before the cinchona experiment he had been deviating from the practice of medical art. His conscience would not allow him to treat the unknown pathologies of the suffering with medicines, which were unproved. In the first year of his married life he gave up practice and scarcely treated anyone for the fear of injuring them rather he occupied himself solely with chemistry and writing. But then when his children started suffering and he could not do anything for them then he became all the more upset. It became more painful for his sense of duty. He then thought that there must be some safe and dependable method of healing. Something that already existed in nature but was overlooked by all. And after the Cinchona experiment he could visualize a ray of hope. After six years of the experiment when he was thoroughly convinced he declared the NEW PRINCIPLE to the world.
The new declaration was welcomed by some and criticized by many. He introduced views like single remedy, minimum dose, potentization, individualization and other important things like knowledge of human nature, wariness in enquiry, and patience of the profoundest kind. Such great was his wisdom that he made medicines out of poisons too. Poisons, he found, could be reduced to such an extent as not only to be completely redeemed from their noxious character, but also to be endowed with curative virtues far excelling in some instances those of the more obviously benevolent substances. He saw that it was to the clumsy use of them alone that they owed their ill repute. Potentisation, that is, making more potent for cure and less powerful for harm was a concept he gave. He found that “ small doses encourage life activity; large doses impede life activity; very large doses destroy life activity.” He could rightly be called “HIPPOCRATES OF THE INFINITELY LITTLE.” He was assured that greater the power of the medicinal substance to cause harm in large quantities, the greater also its potentiality for good if given in sufficiently small measure and prepared by the necessary method. The infinitely little became the infinitely potent, and bulk and energy of particle were seen to be in inverse ratio. Not only was he limited to vegetable kingdom but had knowledge of metals too. Substances like gold, platinum, silver etc. which had no action on health in their solid state when triturated were found to have great medicinal power.
In year 1797, he stated that he had never prescribed more than one remedy at a time and restricted repetition of a dose until the effect of the previous one had been exhausted. He believed that the human mind never understands more than one thing at a time. To prescribe only one medicine at a time in his day was unthought of. Every prescription had to consist of a basis (constituens), a supporting part (adjuvans) and a taste-improving part (corrigens). In a single prescription ten, twenty, thirty or even a great number of medicines were mixed and administered. He wrote, “The ordinary observer, has no conception how extra-ordinarily sensitive a body becomes to drugs when it is diseased and especially to drugs chosen homoeopathically…” He was strongly against “polypharmacy”. In Hahnemann standing thus alone in Germany and, in the whole of Europe towards the close of eighteenth century, we cannot fail to recognize a pioneer of the reform by means of which medicine in large part set itself free.
In spite of his wide recognition as a chemist Hahnemann in 1800 made one serious mistake in chemistry publicly. This was a good opportunity for the opponents to injure his reputation. A statement was published in an article against him, which read, “ We know at least that Hahnemann once deceived people.” Believing he had found by certain combinations a new alkaline salt, he had announced the supposed delivery in three leading scientific journals. The first letter exposing his mistake simply demanded an explanation as to how he was misled into offering a substance at so high a price when it could be obtained for a few pennies. In the reply to this he unreservedly admitted his error as regards the substance in question, adding: “I am incapable of willfully deceiving; I may however like other men, be unintentionally mistaken.” He further exactly described the experiment that had led to his mistaken supposition. No human is perfect or free from error but he had the courage to accept his mistake and to face his opponents boldly.
He penned the homoeopathic philosophy in “The Organon” whose six editions were published. On the title page of the first edition of the ORGANON he inscribed the following lines: “TRUTH, FOR WHICH ALL THE EAGER WORLD IS FAIN,
WHICH MAKES US HAPPY, LIES FOR EVER MORE
NOT BURIED DEEP BUT LIGHTLY COVERED O’VER
BY THE WISE HAND THAT DESTINED IT FOR MEN.”
To the later editions of ORGANON he prefixed the motto SAPARE AUDE, “DARE TO BE WISE”.
All these years he lived a nomadic life. For the third time he came to Leipzig. First he was here at the age of 20 and again at 34, as a physician struggling with poverty and now once more seeking facilities as a teacher of the new method of treating the sick. He applied for permission to lecture at the University. The dean of the medical faculty replied that an external doctor could not obtain the right to deliver lectures until he had “defended his dissertation from the upper chair with a respondent” and had further deposited 50 thalers with the faculty. In that summer he delivered the oration required, and was allowed to lecture at the university. His lecture was so spell bounding that many of his “opponents” on this occasion showed courtesy. A circle of medical students now became his followers. Their number being small was a disappointment to Hahnemann though. Two clinical professors Dr. Rosenmuller and Dr. Clarus became an enemy to what Hahnemann taught and also in some measure a persecutor of any who chose to become his followers. Had he gone to the other extreme and adopted a purely conciliatory tone his following would have been completely different. But then the large group that he would have made would have dwindled after he was gone. The roots would not have been so strong as they would be then based on an impulsive decision. So as it was, the few followers he had were the ones whose insight penetrated deep to see the real nature of his contribution to medicine. They became keen fellow workers and carried forward his work after his demise.
His relationship with his followers was not limited to the professional sphere only. It extended to personal terms also. This silver-haired old man, with his high arched brow, his bright piercing eyes and calm searching countenance would sit every evening amongst his followers and his children. Here it was clear that the serious exterior that he portrayed was just for his search of his goal but was in no sense a reflection of his interior, the bright side of which unfolded on suitable occasions. The mirthful humor, the familiarity and openness, the wit that he displayed were alike engaging. He felt very comfortable in the circle of his friends and followers. It was a recreation, which he allowed himself after eight o’clock in the evening, seated in his armchair wearing his velvet cap and dressing gown, with a glass of Leipzig white beer and his pipe. The conversation would include objects of natural sciences or on conditions of foreign countries. He would be displeased when in these hours advice for some case of disease was sought. He was then either laconic or would answer in a friendly way, “tomorrow on this subject.” And he would often during the consulting hours on the following day refer to the question raised and, stood by with his good kind advice. He was open to everyone’s opinions even if they contradicted him and would occasionally surrender to their views. So in all spheres he was a man who was very close to perfection. He used to organize “suppers” twice a year at his house. To these none were invited except those who had distinguished themselves through intelligence, diligence and strict morality.
Joyous humor and wit dominated these gatherings and laughter was never ending. Here Hahnemann was the most cheerful man. When the meals ended a pipe was smoked and they all dispersed at 11 o’clock. For his smoking habit Dr. Hahnemann writes as a, “useless habit acquired in earlier days when I had to sit up every other night to earn bread for my children whilst I pursued my own researches during the day.”
His consultations were from 9 to 12 in the morning and 2 to 4 in the afternoon. No person was allowed to enter the hall without the review that was performed every week alternately by one of his daughters. His apartment was usually full of patients. He examined accurately and noted down in his journal all the symptoms even those insignificant ones, and referred to them one after the other previous to furnishing the medicine required. After being called for dinner his attention was not easily diverted anywhere else. At one time he was busy in some discussion and disregarded his wife’s call two times. At the third call from his wife he smilingly remarked, “this time I shall get a dark look” this expression was several time made by him and portrayed that this man who had such a great influence over others had to be placed under a guardian in his own house which however he liked.
Another work of Dr. Hahnemann fragmenta de viribus was published which contained first collection of remedies that had been first proved on healthy human beings. This book contained the words “nemo me melius novit, quam manca sint et tenuia” – “nobody knows better than I how imperfect and insufficient it all is.” The proving of drugs on healthy human beings needed reliable people. So Dr. Hahnemann formed a group of provers in which Stapf, Gross, Hornburg, Franz, Ruckert and many others along with Dr. Hahnemann were included. Franz was a botanist and was cured by Hahnemann of a very serious disease. Franz was his assistant and also arranged the symptoms of the proving. Dr. Ruckert in the last years assisted him to make his repertory. Dr. Gross was of great help in the drug proving because of his extraordinarily developed faculty of fine observation. This small but enthusiastic circle was drawn almost entirely from his professional colleagues or medical students. He never undervalued the co-operation of trained minds. Drug proving on healthy human beings was strongly condemned on the ground of the danger to those who subjected themselves to the experiments. But, a very peculiar mode of life prevailed in Hahnemann’s household at Leipzig. The members of the family, the students and the patients all lived for one aim “ the promotion of homoeopathy” The four grown up daughters assisted him in the preparation of medicines and eagerly participated in the drug proving. These careful provings were not at all injurious to them as Hahnemann took all necessary precautions especially study of the “antidotes” of the drugs being proved. One of his sons was a very keen prover. Dr. Stapf proved 32 drugs on himself and Dr. Hahnemann himself proved on him not less than 100 drugs. For years they were proving drug after drug and suffering its effects on their body and minds. Thus naturally they had less difficulty in recognizing the personally experienced drug picture in a patient as it had been branded on their memory as a suffering.
Although Dr. Hahnemann was living in the luxurious and elegant Leipzig, his daughters never took part in any public amusement and were always dressed simply and took part in the household work. His countenance had a quiet, searching, grand expression; only rarely did a gleam of fine humor play over the deep earnestness, which told of the many sorrows and conflicts endured. He was 62 at that time. His posture was upright, his step firm, and his motions lively as those of a man of thirty. When he went out his dress was the simplest; a dark coat, with short small clothes and stockings. But at home in his room he preferred the old household dressing gown, yellow stockings and black velvet cap. The long pipe was seldom out of his hand, and smoking was the only infraction he allowed himself to commit. His drink was water, milk or white beer and his food was simple. Instead of a writing desk he used plain deal table, upon which there constantly lay three or four enormous folios, in which he had written the history of the cases of his patients, and which he used diligently to turn up and write in while conversing with them. This great man was as simple as anyone could be and his only aim was to heal the suffering and in spite of the fact that he was the founder of the great healing science and had many feathers in his cap he and his family and followers were down to earth. This reflects that his aim was only to serve humanity, which adds more to his persona that will shine like the brightest star forever.
But his journey was one with lots of struggle. Prince Schwarzenberg, the field marshall who had commanded the allied armies against Napolean was brought to him for treatment. But his treatment was threatened by the fact that the apothecaries of Leipzig had determined to prevent Hahnemann from preparing and himself giving to his patients the remedies used. Fearing that the treatment that he was seeking as a last resort would come to an end Schwarzenberg on July 20th appealed to the king of Saxony through his government informing that since he was under the treatment his attacks had already been alleviated. The matter was brought for final decision before the king himself. It was arranged that no further steps should be taken against Dr. Hahnemann. The steps that the apothecaries had taken against him were suspended. Hahnemann undertook the case as a desperate one on which he could try the effects of homoeopathy. To the astonishment of all, the patient felt himself better from day to day and was seen driving about after a little time; but the powers of life had been too much weakened to permit his recovery. The former malady returned and the field marshall died on October 15th, 1820. Although the postmortem proved that no medical skill by any chance could have been successful in the case, yet its consequences were very injurious to Hahnemann. The suspended process was immediately resumed, and it was decided that Hahnemann must give up dispensing his own medicines. He attended the funeral of the Prince, taking calmly the occasional hissing that an ignorant crowd meted out to him. He was criticized by 13 Liepzig physicians whose statement appeared in a public journal and a few days later Hahnemann replied- “There stand 13 gentlemen, colleagues of mine in this town, who are struggling hard to show readers, here and elsewhere, how very vexed they are at my reputation (such as it is), at my discoveries, at my writings (which they will not take upon themselves to read), and at the cures which, by the grace of God, I have successfully effected on patients abandoned by the doctors, whereby I have gained the love and esteem of this community and others.” The apothecaries had a larger weapon than a psychological one. The law existing against self-dispensing, was on their side. When it is remembered that Hahnemann only administered medicines as simples and in potency, all this talk of the “law” relating to his dispensing sounds absurd. To be on the losing side, however, meant to him the whole difference between freedom to serve his fellows in the light that had broken in upon his mind, and absolute defeat. The conflicts in which he was engaged were keen and prolonged. And there are many indications that he recognized the weakness of the vindictive spirit. It was his pen that had written to an old friend:
“He who, as regards vexations about injuries, does not remain master of himself, does not treat them with indifference, but allows his mind to be embittered, poisoned by them, will not live long; he will so soon have to leave this world. And what an odious thing it is to be overcome with anger! Try to keep from you all sensitiveness in regard to such things so that nothing can deprive you of your composure, of your God given tranquility. Take warning and learn this beautiful lesson! It will do you good.”
No man who had not both failed and attained as regards this gift of self-mastery could have written such counsel to another.
On the attempt being made by the apothecaries and several doctors to drive him out of Leipzig, Dr. Volkmann, town clerk of Leipzig and forty other citizens signed an appeal and sent it to Dresden. The result was that the authorities reconsidered Hahnemann’s position and he was able to remain in Leipzig until the way for his departure opened. He knew that the pure practice of this art can only apply minute weapons, such small doses of medicine that no apothecary can supply them profitably. And owing to the mode in which he has learnt and has always carried his business, an apothecary could not help finding the whole affair ridiculous and would ridicule it to the public and to the patients. So he knew that it was impossible to find an assistant in the ordinary apothecary for the practice of homoeopathy. With his use of high potencies it would have been impossible for him to place their preparations in hands of people who had not even the remotest respect for this system and who might easily be convinced that such inconceivably small quantities were altogether negligible. Yet eventually from amongst the already licensed chemists he was able to count on his followers. Some suggestion was at this time made that he should now resort to Prussian protection. A letter to the ruling duke of Anhalt-Kothen led to the issue of a decree inviting Hahnemann to make his home in Kothen. More than one reason was leading Hahnemann to accept this. The Governor at the court of Kothen had been cured by his treatment and the duke was his patient at that time. But the permission to dispense as well as prepare medicines was not included. Disappointed on this fact, Hahnemann went to his friend Adam Muller, the Austrian Consul-General in Saxony who said that he had done all that was possible in the matter. But he could not see the sorrow of Dr. Hahnemann. So he wrote to the Governor in Kothen. Dr. Hahnemann was given permission to establish himself in Kothen, as a practicing physician. And was also granted the privilege of preparing and dispensing the remedies needed for the treatment with his own hands. In June of 1821, he left Leipzig.
After only a few months residence He completely cured an inflammation of the lungs without venesection by homoeopathic minimum doses, a cure which so far had been regarded as impossible. In the press, in March of 1824, announcement was made that the Duke, who had been suffering from dangerous nerve affection, was now out of danger, thanks to the efforts of Hahnemann. This was a still more obvious tribute to his powers. Hahnemann had long been searching for the cure of chronic diseases. He wanted to teach young physicians at the bedside of patients, in some clinical establishments through their own observations. He had asked the duke for hospital opportunities. But it was unlikely that anything would be done, as there was no hospital in existence. With time his hopes were shattered.
All this was followed by the sad demise of his wife Henriette. She was homely and practical in the extreme, nevertheless Hahnemann was able to speak of her as “the noble companion of his professional life” Franz Hartmann says that she ruled her husband and no doubt the household, yet he willingly let this happen, in the belief that he owed this tribute to his wife, as she watched over all his peculiarities with the greatest attention and punctuality. She had considerable musical faculty setting her own poems sometime to music. She had sacrificed for him the whole of her moderate property at the time when he formed the resolution to withdraw from practice to seek better methods to relieve his fellow men from suffering. She watched with tender care the domestic happiness and well being, so that he felt happy in his family and seldom left them. The responsibility was equally shared by his daughters who were not lacking either in capacity or will.
His years in Kothen were not easy either. More and more violent attacks on him and his system succeeded one another continuously. Dr Stapf, Dr. Hering, Dr. Boenninghausen, Dr. Gross and many were amongst his disciples at that time. The carrying out of his plans was left to his disciples. At this time a single prescription of his had brought about sudden and widespread publicity. This prescription, camphor, was directed towards arresting the tragic epidemic of Asiatic cholera, which was spreading rapidly with a heavy death toll all over Europe in 1831-32. Several essays on cure of cholera followed and remarkable results were attained on Hahnemann’s advice. The interesting fact was he had never before taken or attended any case of cholera and still he found the remedy with such complete conviction and been able to make helpful suggestions with such confidence. He had procured a very accurate description of the symptoms and had found that the first and most important of these in cholera patients resembled one another, and were similar to the symptoms produced if a healthy individual took camphor in large quantities. An increasing number of enquiries from all over Germany and beyond now got into touch with him. From many places like Moravia, Lemberg, Daka and elsewhere reports of good results were also forthcoming. In Austria Hahnemann’s new method of treatment was still prohibited by an Imperial Mandate but Father Veith did not hesitate to show his convictions openly. He talked about the wonders of Homoeopathy in the cathedral. In 1831, he received requests to procure homoeopathic physicians from many Prussian cities. Yet another convert to homoeopathy was English physician Dr. F.F Quin. He was appointed as physician to Napoleon 1. But the great emperor died before his appointment took effect. He was made family physician to the Prince of England. Dr. Quin went on to establish the first homoeopathic hospital in London. In 1853 outbreak of cholera was there in England. This happened just as the general board of health came into being. In 1854 the figures of death from cholera under orthodox treatment accounted to 59.2% and under homoeopathic treatment 16.4%. In all 54,000 persons died. The medical inspector of the government though not a homoeopath himself stated that of all the cases of cholera treated in homoeopathic hospitals did well under homoeopathic treatment that would have definitely sunk under the other. This made a place for homoeopathy in England by inserting a clause, which prevented the homoeopathic physicians from being denied a place on the medical register being set up. This new method of healing made a splendid progress in Baden, Alsace and Switzerland in spite of all the oppositions put forth by the enemies. In United States of North America a society was formed which had Dr. Hahnemann’s name and whose aim was to propagate Homoeopathy. In one state in Germany self-dispensing was allowed. In Russia practice of Homoeopathy was allowed throughout the realm and provision was made for establishing pure homoeopathic chemist shops. So despite the large disappointments, this made him proud and happy that his system was widely accepted and adhered to as a safe and reliable mode of treatment. With assurance he could observe, “ The truth has already extended its rays too widely and shines too brightly to be eclipsed.”
A comparatively young French woman, Mademoiselle Melanie D’Hervilly, visited Kothen. Her desire to see the Saxon doctor, whose fame had reached her, was as strong as her wish to consult him. She had been interested in medical matters from childhood but later was trained as a painter. She married Dr. Hahnemann on January 18th, 1835, but it was not immediately known to even his closest friends. To them he wrote subsequently with praise of his second wife. From varied quarters letters of congratulations balanced with criticism of the step taken were received. After a short while the newly married couple went to Paris. And he got the permission to practice there due to the influence of his young wife with king Louis Phillipe. Before this he had decided to retire from practice and had given all the records of his patients to his daughter. He wrote to his daughter to return the records promising that they would be given to her after his demise.
Soon after his eighty-eighth birthday he became affected with a bronchial trouble, to which he had been prone in the spring for a number of years. The illness this time was more protracted and lasted for 10 weeks, and the doctor who until towards the end, prescribed for him, appears to have known from the commencement that his days were drawing to a close. At times there were distressing attacks, due to increasing oppression. During one of these his wife expressed the thought that as he had relieved so many others and had suffered so many hardships in his life Providence surely owed to him exemption from all suffering. To this he replied that everyone in this world works according to gifts and powers that he has received from the God. He had for many years faced the fact that death awaited him at the end of his journey. At five o’clock in the morning on July 2nd 1843, Hahnemann died.
Dr. Croserio, wrote about Hahnemann’s last hours
“How much equanimity, patience and imperturbable goodness he exhibited! … He calmly made his final arrangements, and embraced each of his friends with tenderness, such as belongs to a final adieu, but with steady equanimity. His face expressed an ineffable calm. Death could not detract from the angelic goodness that belonged to the expression of his features.”
Madame Hahnemann after having her husband’s body embalmed, arranged for an almost secret funeral in early hours of July 11 morning. It was an old vault built of brick, which already contained two other coffins. The immortal founder of Homoeopathy was buried like the poorest of the poor, only his wife, daughter, grandson and Dr. Lethiere being the mourners. His wish to have “Non inutilis vixi” engraved on his tomb was still unfulfilled 20 years afterwards. But his followers were not content to allow him to rest there. In 1898 authorities in Paris sanctioned a reburial. Representatives of medical profession of France, Germany, Belgium, England, Italy, Russia, Spain and United States attended this ceremony. The inscription chosen by him was also now accorded him with full recognition of its appropriateness: “ NON INUTILIS VIXI- I HAVE NOT LIVED IN VAIN”