Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 23.djvu/753

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ism in total ruins dominated by the vital principle. What, then, is disease—typhoid, pneumonia, scarlet fever? No; disease is the impairment of the equalization of the vital force, and it finds expression where the organism is weakest.

What is cure—to take physic for typhoid or scarlet fever? No; to cure is to locate the center of the disturbance, the diseased nerve cell, and restore the equilibrium.

How do you do this? In spite of its many ramifying influences, the nerve-cell preserves, to the close and exact student, its individuality, often veiled under the apparently familiar features of others, but still recognizable by the differentiating mind. It is this similar of state and remedy which the homœopathic physician, who knows and applies the law, seeks in the patient and in the materia medica; when found, the means of restoring the equalization of the vital current is found with it.

As there is but one nerve-center of a disease, so is there but one remedy.

The system has always a tendency to resist, by reaction, the morbific cause which disturbs it. The similar stimulates reaction. When you put your hot hand into hot water, and take it out and wipe it dry, by the law of reaction it becomes cool. So, if to the frost-bitten ear or hand you apply snow or ice, by the law of reaction the frozen part burns under its stimulus. The power of resistance, which is reaction, is the strength of the constitution, or is the constitution itself. It is this law of reaction under which homœopathy works, by its similars stimulating the additional resistance necessary to aid in nature's cure.

If you go out into excessive cold, and the power of resistance is equal to the demand, you turn red; if not, and this power is overwhelmed, you turn white. And the same difference is markedly observable among those who take sea-baths. By the law of reaction they vary in color from that of a boiled lobster to the livid hue of death, graduated and shaded off by the loss of the power of resistance. All cures are sought by homœopathy under this law, and depend for their success upon this power of resistance, and it is of vital importance that this power be not diminished, for without it there can be no cure. Outside of medicine this law of reaction in the system is recognized as an accepted fact. It is the law of cure, and the study of this law is a science, and that science is homœopathy.

The reason why scarlet fever, measles, chicken-pox, and small-pox do not, as a general rule, recur in the system is that, at the first attack, the system has reacted so strongly against these diseases as to be proof against a second attack. The reaction has so strengthened the system to resist the particular form of morbific influence that it will not readily yield to it again.

"Homœopathy is another form of quackery," says a writer in the June number of "The Popular Science Monthly." It might be ob-