Author: Doug Brown
Editorial: interbeing and interhomeopathy
by Doug Brown
The “co-incidence” of parent and child needing the same or similar remedy has been often noted in contemporary homeopathic practice. Knowledge of the remedy pictures of close relations often helps us in pinpointing the needed medicine for our patients; indeed, the family systems approach to therapeutic counseling pioneered by Salvador Minuchin and reaching a pinnacle in the constellations of Bert Hellinger may have its own parallel in homeopathy, although the outlines of this understanding have yet to be precisely elaborated.
The re-occurrence of the same or similar energetic pattern across the generations does, however, point to fundamental mysteries as to the origins of our energetic states. Hahnemann’s concept of miasm has been developed and elaborated by many homeopaths to describe the persistence of symptom patterns, but invoking the word or variably-understood concept does little to explain why patterns persist. Although in this age we reflexively attribute so much to genetic inheritance, there is little or no evidence that our chromosomes carry specific codes for Staphysagria, Bromium or Millefolium. Why and how, then, do so many of us repeat the patterns of our antecedents, in spite of drastic changes in our places of residence, our way of living, and our stated values?
One untestable view might be this: that as families move through generations, a group of souls working on a similar lesson take turns incarnating to resolve specific issues and gain greater self-awareness. As remedies carry within them the seeds of specific spheres of consciousness waiting to unfold and elaborate themselves until answers to their innermost questions are found, repeated instances of the same remedy will arise over a family’s generational history.
Regardless of one’s metaphysical views, however, the satisfaction of “breaking the chain” of dysfunction and misery as it is passed down from one generation to the next is deeply satisfying. I have asked colleagues to contribute papers and cases attesting to this phenomenom, and I have been more richly rewarded than I ever anticipated. To them, I feel deep gratitude, and I hope you also feel enriched by this issue.
It begins with a deeply moving case of Lac humanum by Krista Heron. Informed by Massimo Mangialavori’s understanding of how familial identity blurs individual identity in Lac cases, a remarkable transformation from hatred to love of life unfolds. Karim Adal then tells us the story of four generations of fear, violence, and terror. This paper is remarkable for many reasons. It presents the cure of an “incurable” neurologic disease, MS. It gives a beautiful description of the sphere of experience of Capsicum. What I particularly like, however, is Karim’s pointing out how the pathological symptoms of the patient herself helped her break the pattern of violence which was her “inheritance”.
Jason-Aeric Hueneke gives us a fascinating account of a homeopathic family constellation in which Bromium provided the common link. It is a story of healing of a grandfather, his daughters, and his grand-daughters. On this journey, Jason-Aeric gives us the pictures of Bromium, Calcium bromatum, Mercurius bromatum, and Magnesium bromatum.
Magnesium bromatum, in turn, becomes its own link to the next article in this issue. Dinesh Chauhan, who has done so much to provide a rational, reproducible, and artistic method of interviewing patients with this three step Case Witnessing Process, explores the methodology of case-taking when there is a history of emotional trauma. How do we proceed when the patient would be re-traumatized by asking directly about the experience?
How might a grandfather’s experience as a prisoner-of-war manifest in the grandchild? If you are curious and would like to read a beautiful Compositae case, do not miss Anna Koller-Wilmking’s case of Millefolium. Anna also gives us a seasoned Pediatrician’s tips on recognizing cases of Sinapis alba, recounting how the pattern of blockage experienced by a mother reproduced itself in her child.
Apis has proved itself an invaluable remedy. What do we do when a case seems very Apis-like but has the wrong modalities and the patient is uncharacteristically introspective? Lori Johnson encountered this conundrum in treating her own case; you may bumble with wonder at her solution!
Staphysagria is a remedy we all know well; is it possible to see it in a new light? Meeta Nihlani explores the cases of a mother and son through the lens of a new understanding of the relationship of plant families formulated by Michal Yakir and applied by Mahesh Gandhi. The article introduces us to this system and recounts the beautiful healing of a fragile mother and autistic son with this single, time-tested remedy.
The last article takes us back full-circle to an animal remedy, which I had confused with a mammal. The healing of a mother-daughter relationship was completed with the help of the spirit of the swan. How can we better discern whether a milk or a feather is needed in a case?
Meeta begins her article with a quotation from the great Buddhist teacher Thich Nhat Hanh, who coined the term “Interbeing”. This wonderful formulation of the doctrine of dependent co-arising reminds of the radical connectedness of us all. Perhaps it is not surprising that, given the reality of our “horizontal” inter-connectedness, there is also a vertical indivisibility connecting ancestors to generations yet unborn. This journal, Interhomeopathy, manifests the spirit of Interbeing within our profession: it is free of prejudice, of divisiveness, of close-mindedness to the lines of inquiry and practice animating the work of contemporary homeopathic healers. It is also blessedly free of advertising as well as subscription fees, and seems to run on the highly productive fuel of the pure love of homeopathic contributors around the world. We are lucky to have this journal and lucky to have the generous ongoing labor of Deborah Collins and Patricia Maché, who are responsible for it showing up in our “In” boxes so regularly.