There has been a discussion in homeopathy on how many remedies are needed. Otherwise framed the question is “How many remedies are needed to cure everyone?” Some homeopaths have the opinion that the existing ones are sufficient. In my experience and practice, the old remedies are far from enough to help every patient. I have seen the same in many other clinics and heard similar experiences from many homeopaths.
I think that a Bergenia case cannot be cured with Lycopodium. Those remedies are too different to be able to give a cure. If that would be possible it would mean that the Law of Similars would be violated. It is my experience that remedies have to be specific to enable a cure.
Another way of stating the question is “How similar does a remedy have to be in order to cure?” or “How can the Law of Similars be specified?”
In this book I have used as a principle that several species of one genus will have a similar effect and that they are so similar that they can cure the state of other species of the same genus. There is no proof of this statement and it will take much more time and development of homeopathy before we can come remotely to such a proof.
This principle means we only have to research one species of every genus. There are about 300000 species and 15000 genera in the Plant kingdom.
It should be remarked in this respect that some genera have a wide variety, with many quite different species. An example is Euphorbia that has very different kinds of species, which will have quite different expressions in patients. From my point of view, the genus Euphorbia should be split into several genera but most genera have only very similar species.
In principle, species of the same genus are seen and treated as one remedy.
Varieties and cultivars are treated as the same genus. This is a reason that cultivars are not mentioned in this book. There is a preference for naturally occurring species.
It is also assumed in this book that there is no essential difference of the several parts of the plant taken. It makes no essential difference if the root, flower, leaf or any other part of the plant is taken. It is also assumed that it makes no difference which plant is taken, where it grows and in what state of development it was harvested.
There are about 250000 species of flowering plants. That is an enormous amount and very difficult to handle in the old ways of homeopathy. With the above restrictions one has to use only one species of every genus. The number of genera in the Angiospermae is about 15000. That is manageable.
With the Plant theory one can expect about 60 * 7 * 17 remedies coming from about 60 orders, having each 7 families and 17 Stages. That is 7140, which is in the range of the 15000 genera.
There are relatively few genera in some Orders and Families. The consequence is that there are not enough genera for each Stage. This leads to a discussion about the reason for it and a possible solution for this problem.
1. Families can be taken together to form one family and one Subphase. For some Orders this is what happens, especially in the Hydrogen series Subclasses. In other Orders it would lead to a divergence from the other Orders in the Subclass, which is not acceptable.
2. Family can be attributed with 7 Phases instead of 17 Stages. This would lead to the question why some Families will have 7 Phases and others 17 Stages.
3. Each family has more genera that are not discovered yet. That is quite unlikely, as there have been few discoveries of new genera in recent decades.
4. Each family has more genera due to the fact that the genera now accepted in taxonomy should be split into several genera. This possibility is difficult to ascertain.
5. Some possibilities do not come to fruition in nature. This possibility raises the question why some possibilities come to fruition and others not.
6. The Plant theory is not correct in some respects.