Vol.XIV #4 - The Centesimal And Lm Potencies
Simillimum - Winter 2001
A Comparison from the 5th and 6th Editions of The Organon
By David Little
A homeopath should be well acquainted with Hahnemann's references to potency in the 4th and 5th editions of 7he Organon in order to understand the Homeopathy of the 1840s, which is found in the 6th edition (1842). Homeopathy as commonly practiced today is based on the single dry dose, wait and watch method of Hahnemann's first Chronic Diseases (1828) and the 4th Organon (1829). In this method, a single pellet dose of the centesimal potency is used as long as the patient is improving in even the slightest manner. Many of the great 19th century homeopaths like James Kent were masters of this method. The dry dose may only be repeated when there is a definite relapse of the old symptoms calling for repetition. Hahnemann was not completely comfortable with this method in cases that only slowly improved over a longer period of time.
For this reason, in the 5th Organon (1833) Hahnemann introduced olfaction and the oral medicinal solution as new delivery systems for homeopathic remedies. The change from a dry static pellet dose to a dynamic medicinal solution succussed prior to administration had an immediate impact on his posology and case management strategies. In the 5th Organon, he suggested that “any striking progressive improvement” precludes the repetition of the remedy, because the cure is already taking place at the fastest possible rate.
At the same time, he taught that the single dose was not sufficient for those cases that slowly improve over a period of weeks to months. For these cases the Founder recommended administering the remedy in medicinal solution or olfaction at “suitable intervals to speed the cure.” Hahnemann called this his new “middle path,” as it stands between the single dose wait and watch and the mechanical repetition of remedies. This is a truly artistic method that demands individualization of the case management procedure.
Over the next 10 years, Hahnemann worked exclusively with the medicinal solution for oral administration and olfaction. Around the year 1840 he began to introduced his new LM potency into clinical practice to complement his C potencies. With the new 1/50,000 dilution ratio, he introduced a new potency system with unique medicinal qualities. This new double pharmacy greatly expanded the therapeutic horizons of Homeopathy.
The Paris casebooks
I wish to review the posology systems of the 5th and 6th Organon in relationship to the centesimal and LM potencies. It is very important to study the remedial powers of Hahnemann's twin potency systems and recognize their similarities and differences. The most important aspect of the revised methods of the 1840’s is the medicinal solution and the methods of adjusting the dose. Many people think that Hahnemann used the dry dose for his centesimal potencies and the medicinal solution exclusively for the LM potency. This is incorrect. He used the C and LM potency in medicinal solution, side by side in the clinic, from 1840-1843.
Investigations of Hahnemann’s cases from 1840-1843 show that he used a remedy bottle with the addition of a dilution glass for all his homeopathic remedies (C and LM). In his last 10 years he refined the Homeopathy of the 4th Organon and expanded his posology and case management strategies. So the first point is that Hahnemann introduced his revised liquid method for the centesimals in 1833, and the LM potency in 1843.
The mother of all potencies
The 3C is the mother of all homeopathic potencies. In 1806, after Hahnemann first proved Arsenicum in 3C, he wrote an article titled “What are Medicines and What are Poisons’?” The 3rd centesimal was the first true homeopathic dynamization. This is the root of the centesimal scale, as at the I to 1,000,000 ratio, 3C marks the level that homeopathic remedies become nontoxic. For 34 more years he ran trials with raising the potency of the centesimal scale, until he had experimented with the 3C to the I M.
After years of experiments, he settled on the 6C, 12C, 24C, 30C series as the most suitable lower potencies. With his low potencies, Hahnemann started with the 30C potency and then used the 24C, 18C, etc., in descending order. He continued to lower the degree of his low potencies 30C-6C in his last years, 1840-1843. At the same time, the Paris casebooks record him raising his high potency centesimals through potencies like 197C, 198C, 199C, 200C. Melanie Hahnemann wrote a letter stating that Hahnemann used a 1M potency on occasions during his experiments. It seems he kept his high potencies separate from his low potencies, in small tubes with poppy seed size pellets. Hahnemann always gave his high potency centesimals in medicinal solution, just like the LM potencies.
At 85 years old, he came to another turning point in his long career. With his young wife Melanie at his side, he began to ponder his legacy. Homeopathy had come a long way since its birth in the late 1700’s, but the old homeopath was not satisfied with his system. The medicinal solution had greatly improved the treatment of virulent acute illness, and of many chronic diseases, but the weak, the elderly, those suffering with considerable pathology, and degenerative chronic miasmatic diseases still presented a particular dilemma.
In certain cases, when Hahnemann used his low potencies (6-30C) they would not cure, but if he used the high potencies (20OC- 1M) they produced unproductive aggravations. Whhat could he do with this unfortunately large percentage of cases that still resisted homeopathic treatment? This was a lacuna in his therapeutic system that he wished to fill before he died.
The development of the LM potency
After 36 years of raising the potency of the centesimal remedies, Hahnemann decided to raise the ratio of dilution instead. Leaving the 1/100 dilution ratio of the centesimals behind, Hahnemann started searching for a potency that would fill this hole in homeopathic therapeutics. After countless experiments he settled on the 1/50,000 dilution ratio and created the 50 millesimal potency. I have reviewed hundreds of Hahnemann's cases from the LM period (1840-1843) over the past two years. One of the first things one notices is that he used both the centesimal and LM potencies in medicinal solutions with the addition of a dilution glass in his last two years.
The LM potency is first made from the 3C trituration (1:IOOXIOOXIOO). Next, one grain of this trituration is placed into 500 drops to make the LM/0 solution (a 1:501 ratio). Then one drop is taken from the LM/0 solution and added to 100 drops of dilute and succussed 100 times. This makes the LM 1 or 0/1 potency, the first degree of the LM pharmacy (IOOXIOOXIOOX500XIOO=LM 1). The centesimals of the 5th Organon (1833) were made with 10 hand succussions, although many modern pharmacies use 10 to 40 or more succussions administered by machine.
The amount of original medicinal substances in the LM 1 is similar to the amount found in the 6C potency, although its remedial powers are greatly expanded due to the larger dilution medium. A mere comparison of the amount of original substances found in the C and LM potency does not show the differences in their inner medicinal qualities. The L.M pharmaceutical solution is then used to moisten 500 tiny poppy seed size pellets.
One pellet of the 0/1 is further diluted in a minimum of three and a half ounces to make the medicinal solution. After 10 firm succussions, one teaspoon (or occasionally, two or three) is taken from the medicinal solution and further diluted in a dilution glass of water. From this dilution glass one teaspoon (occasionally two or three) is given to the patient as a dose. The final liquid dose has been diluted through two more stages since the dry dose. The actual amount of original substances given to the patient is more diluted than the dry pill in the medicinal solution and stirred into a dilution glass. This final, minute amount of original substances in the dose has yet to be calculated in the equation.
In this method, the size of the dose is greatly reduced as the potency is gradually increased, so that the vital force never receives the same exact dose twice in succession. In this way, the vital force can receive the single dose or a series of doses in medicinal solution without the aggravations witnessed in the dry or unmodified liquid dose. In this way, we can speed the cure to one half, one fourth, or less time, compared to the previous method.
Differences between the C and LM potencies
The high potency centesimals are diluted more times then the LM potency, although they receive far fewer succussions at each dilution level. The higher C potencies like 200C and I M have a smaller amount of substance, and more commutative numbers of succussions and dilutions than the LM potency. For this reason, some think the LM’s are low potency remedies. The LM potency, however, has a much larger dilution ratio and 10 times more succussions per potency increment. These characteristics greatly transform the medicinal qualities of the LM remedies. In the footnote to aphorism 272 of the 6th Organon (O'Reilly edition) Hahnemann suggests the following: “In earlier instructions, I specified that a whole drop of a liquid in a given potency be added to 100 drops of wine spirits for higher potentization, but meticulous experiments have convinced me that this proportion of the dilution medium to the medicine being dynamized (100:1) is much too narrowly limited to develop the powers of the medicine substance properly and to a high degree, by means of a large number of succussions, unless one uses great force.”
Hahnemann found that continuing to increase the number of dilutions and succussions of the centesimal potency did not fill the desired therapeutic lacuna in his new healing art. He came to see that the 1 to 100 dilution ratio is limited by its smaller dilution factor, so he began to experiment with new, larger dilution ratios, rather than raising the C potency to higher and higher degrees. He also noticed that when strong succussions were used in a relatively low dilution such as the centesimal I to 100 ratio, they make aggressive medicines, prone to causing quick aggravations and unproductive secondary curative effects in the long run.
“With a ratio of dilution medium to the medicine as low as 100:1, very many impacts by means of a powerful machine, as it were, are forced in. As a result, medicines arise that, especially in the higher degrees of dynamizations, almost instantaneously but with stormy-indeed dangerous-intensity, impinge on the patients (especially delicate ones) without bringing about an enduring, gentle counter action of the life-principle.” (Footnote to aphorism 270.)
Once again we see the importance of the balance of the primary action of the remedy and curative response of the vital force. When too many dilutions and strong succussions have been forced into the higher centesimal potencies, it makes medicines that are prone to aggressive primary actions and strong aggravations that do not produce an "enduring gentle counter action of the life principle." Such furious or prolonged aggravations are too be avoided at all cost, as they disrupt the natural symptom pattern, waste vitality, and complicate the cure. The LM potency, on the other hand, is given in the smallest liquid dose so it produces mild primary effect and a long enduring gentle counter action of the vital principle.
During the period of the 5th Organon, Hahnemann used the unmodified liquid dose made up each time from one or two poppy seed size pellets. In aphorism 29 of the 5th Organon, Hahnemann described how the centesimal method works. He wrote that the similar homeopathic remedy 11 pushed into the place of the weaker natural disease," against which the instinctive vital force was "compelled to direct an increased amount of energy." The idea of pushing into place and compelling the vital force to act more energetically against the remedy is based on the phenomena of the homeopathic aggravation. The methods of the 4th and 5th Organon are based on a crisis-like aggravation, in contrast to the gentle medicinal solution and the noninvasive LM method.
Aggravation in the 5th edition
The centesimal model of cure still involves the idea of “crisis,” where the aggravation of symptoms compels the vital force to act with increased energy to remove the remedy disease and begin convalescence. The idea of crisis as an integral part of the cure is very ancient. This was before Habnemann discovered the noninvasive method of the LM potency, the medicinal solution, and the split dose. Vide aphorism 279 of the 5th edition: “The pure experience shows universally.. a dose of the homeopathic selected remedy can never be prepared so small that it shall not be stronger than the natural disease, and shall not be able to overpower, extinguish, and cure it, at least in part, as long as it is capable of causing some, though but a light preponderance of its own symptoms, over those of the disease resembling it (slight homeopathic aggravation, aphorisms 157-160) immediately after its ingestion.”
The need for aggravation was also stressed as an integral part of cure in aphorism 282. “The smallest possible dose of homeopathic medicine capable of producing only the very slightest homeopathic aggravation, will because it has the power of exciting symptoms bearing the greatest possible resemblance to the original disease (but yet stronger even in the minute dose), attack principally and almost solely the parts in the organism that are already affected, highly irritated and rendered excessively susceptible to such a similar stimulus.”
Hahnemann goes on to say that this medicinal disease alters the vital force that rules the susceptible parts to a state of very similar artificial disease “so that the living organism now suffers from the artificial medical disease alone, which, from its nature and owing to the minuteness of dose, will soon be extinguished by the vital force that is striving to return to the normal state.” The idea of a crisis-like aggravation compelling the vital force to increase its energy was part of the dry dose and unadjusted liquid dose methods of the 1830s.
In the 6th Organon, Hahnemann revises the model to include the necessity of a aggravation-like crisis, with the idea that the dose can never be made so small that it cannot overcome the disease without aggravation. In the LM model, aggravation at the start of treatment is a sign of the too large a dose or too high a potency and unnecessary repetition of the remedy. Vide aphorism 279 of the 6th Organon. “This pure experience now shows universally that:
- If considerable corruption of an important [vital] organ does not obviously lie at the base of the disease (even if the disease is chronic and complicated) and
- if during treatment, all other foreign medicinal impingements on the patient have been withheld, then the dose of a homeopathically chosen, highly potentized remedy for the beginning of treatment of an important (especially chronic) disease, as a rule can never be prepared so small that it would not
a. be stronger than the natural disease,
b. be able, at least in part, to over-tune the natural disease, and
c. even be able to extinguish a part of the natural disease in the feeling of the life principle, thus producing a beginning of the cure.”
b. be able, at least in part, to over-tune the natural disease, and
c. even be able to extinguish a part of the natural disease in the feeling of the life principle, thus producing a beginning of the cure.”
All of the references to the need for crisis-like aggravation to push the remedy in place of the natural disease and compel an increase of energy of the vital force are removed from the 6th Organon. There is no need to force, push, compel, or aggravate in the noninvasive LM method of the1840s. This represents a shift in the homeopathic paradigm from compelling through aggravation to a completely noninvasive method or posology. In Hahnemann's advanced methods there is no need of aggravations, crises, overmedication, antidotes, long periods of waiting, or any excess counteractions. All these side effects have been removed from the homeopathic system of the 1840s.
Primary and secondary effects
There arc many powers in nature but the potentized remedy is a unique creation of the intellect of Samuel Hahnemann. In aphorism 64 of the 6th Organon, he noted two types of secondary actions to medicines. The first is the opposing counteraction, where the organism automatically presents an opposite state proportional to its energy. The second is the curative counteraction to a homeopathic remedy, where the vital force directs its whole energy to remove the mistuning from without while reestablishing homeostasis. Vide part 2 of aphorism 64 of the 6th Organon. “If there is no state in nature exactly opposite to the initial action, the life-force appears to strive to assert its superiority to extinguish the alternation produced in itself from without (by the medicine), in place of which it reinstates its norm (counteraction curative action).”
This action by the life force to assert its superiority is the power of the curative secondary action. To accomplish this goal, the vital force heals the pathology in stages, from within to without, in response to the remedy as it seeks control over homeostasis, thus completely removing the dynamic mistuning. This establishes another aspect of Hahnemann’s Direction of Cure (see also Hering’s Laws).
If the balance between the primary action and the secondary actions is maintained there will be no aggravations or excessive counteractions during the process of cure. The instinctive vital force does not react in an opposing manner to a potentized remedy, but rather seeks to manifest its superior vitality over the remedial disease from without while reestablishing homeostatic balance within.
The life force may produce an opposing reaction against the wrong remedy and too large a dose. If the remedy has been given in the medicinal solution in a properly small amount, the vital force will have little problem removing the remedial influence and no antidotes will be needed. If the dose is too large, in too high a potency, it may mistune the vital force with a long-term medicinal disease (aphorism 276). For this reason, the dose, potency and repetition must be carefully controlled.
Opposing secondary actions
In aphorism 65, Hahnemann gives several examples of the primary and opposing secondary actions that take place under the influence of various medicinal powers (64A: counteraction, after-action). “Where there is such a one, the life force brings forth the exact opposite condition-state (counteraction, after-action) to the impinging action (initial action) that has been absorbed into itself. The counteraction is produced in as great a degree as was the impinging action (initial action) of the artificial morbific or medicinal potency on it, proportionate to the life force’s own energy.”
Here the vital force is compelled to produce an antagonistic secondary action in which it presents the opposite state in proportionate energy. The following examples represent these principles very well (vide aphorism 65).
- “A hand bathed in hot water is at first much warmer than the other unbathed hand (initial action), but one it is removed and thoroughly dried, it overcomes cold after some time, and then much colder then the other hand (after action).”
- “An arm immersed in the coldest after for a long time is at first far paler and colder than the other one (initial action), but once it is removed from the cold water and dried off it becomes not only warmer that the other but hot, red, and inflamed (after action of the life force).”
- “The heavy, stuporous sleep caused by opium (initial action) is followed the next night by greater insomnia (counteraction).”
“And thus, after each initial action of a medicine that in large dosage strongly modifies the condition of the healthy body, our life force always and everywhere brings to pass, in the after action, the exact opposite state (when, as stated, there really is such).”
Strong medicines in large doses tend to cause opposing counteractions from the life force. Sooner of later the vital force will oppose any medicine in a large dose (including homeopathic) with antagonistic counteractions. In Homeopathy the vital force is exposed to a very small dose of a highly potentized substance that elicits a pure curative effects for the Lebenskraft (life force) without any overreactions.
Curative secondary action
Homeopathic cures take place because of the unusually small dose of a high potency of a similar remedy (aphorism 68, with reference to 64, point 2). To this subtle medicinal disease the life force needs to use no more secondary effect than necessary to remove the new similar artificial disease and return the organism to a complete recovery. There is no state in nature that is exactly the opposite of a simillimum in the correct potency and a
Due to the extraordinarily high potency and small amount of the remedy, the primary action gently over-tunes the natural disease without any aggravation (63, primary action). After this, the life principle seeks to assert its superiority by removing the remedy mistuning from without by returning to full health and vitality within. Aphorism 64b: “If there is no state in nature exactly opposite in the initial action, the life force appears to strive to assert its superiority by extinguishing the alterations produced in itself from without (by the medicine), in place of which it reinstates its norm (after-action, curative action).”
This healing process ideally takes place with no aggravations, no crisis, and no overly noticeable reactions other then the rapid restoration of health and vitality (§148). That is the goal of the Similia Minimus in the 6th Organon.
The correct dose of the LM potency in medicinal solution produces a non-aggressive primary action, no aggravations, and a long-enduring, gentle, curative effect by the life principle. Even during the curative response, the remedy may still be repeated at suitable intervals when it is necessary to speed the cure. The curative reaction of the vital force is not disrupted by the repetition of the minimal size dose of the medicinal solution of the remedy, as may be caused by the repetition of the dry dose.
Cycle of healing with the LM remedies
- small liquid dose
- no aggravation
- enduring, gentle secondary effect
- removal of the remedial disease
- cessation of remedy duration
- complete return of health and full vitality
This demonstrates the important role that Hahnemann gave to the Lebenskraft (vital force) in the 6th Organon. The goal of the LM strategy is a smooth, continuous, graduated ascent to health and vitality through 30 microtonal potencies, without aggravations.
In contrast to Hahnemann’s explanation of the principle of primary and secondary action (as reviewed in the preceding paragraphs), there are those who say the vital force removes no mistuning and plays no active role in healing. Like the mechanists of the old school, they think of cure only in terms of a medicinal power, rather then as a combination of the remedy action and the curative effect of the Lebenskraft, the Vigor Vita. Hahnemann spoke of the essential role of life force in the Preface to the Introduction of the 6th Organon in 1842: “Homeopathy is aware that a cure
can only succeed through the counteraction of the life force against the correctly chosen medicine. The stronger the life force that still prevails in the patient, the more certain and faster the cure that takes place.” (emphasis added).
The action of the centesimal potencies
The remedial powers of the centesimal scale reaches its peak very quickly, promotes crisis, and then brings on a longer duration of secondary action. The Kentian high potency system has become the modern potency standard, with great jumps of potency levels between 30C, 200C, IM, IOM, 50M, CM, etc. This trend was established by Hahnemann, as he quite commonly used the 30C, 200C and experimented with the IM. These large jumps in potency cause a quick vertical arch of the potency scale in the upward direction. Even in medicinal solution the 200C and IM tend to aggravate toward the beginning of the treatment rather than the end. This is due to the 100 to 1 dilution ratio and strong successions.
By nature, the centesimal potencies are quick in their onset, as they can cause aggravation at the beginning of the treatment, when the pathology is at its maximum and the vitality at its weakest. This tendency is still witnessed (although in a modified form) in the centesimals in medicinal solution. The power of the C potency is most similar (rapid onset, quick crisis, and aggressive power) to accidents, traumas, strong acute diseases, virulent acute miasms, crises or exacerbations of the chronic states.
The aggressive effects of the large increases in potency degrees of the centesimal scale are enhanced by the greater number of succussions per degree of the centesimal potency system. The medicinal solution moderates the aggressive tendencies of the C’s, but they still tend to aggravate more quickly, more forcefully, and for longer duration than the correctly given LM potencies.
The action of the LM potencies
Chronic diseases often have an insidious onset, slowly increasing pathology, and reach crisis after a period of many years. The LM potency is subtle in its onset, uses a series of slowly increasing potencies, each dose slightly more potent than the last. The LM’s tend to aggravate at the end of treatment, when the pathology is healed and vitality restored. This is a sign that the remedy is no longer needed. If the repetition of the remedy is reduced as the patient improves, there will be no aggravation at the end of treatment. The C potencies have a rapid onset and can cause aggravation at the beginning of treatment, when the patient is the most ill and the weakest.
This is not the best situation. This is another reason why the LM’s are suitable for many inherited or acquired chronic miasmatic diseases, and particularly for patients whose vitality is compromised by excessive drugging.
The properly adjusted LM also works well on serious trauma, virulent acute disorders, and crisis. Here the higher opening potencies (0/3-0/6) are sometime of use, although most cases resolve on LM 1-3.
We have discussed some of the difference between the remedial powers of the C and LM potencies that makes them complementary opposites. Once the homeopath understands the qualities of the C’s and LM’s, they will understand how to use them at the correct times. The Paris casebooks show that Hahnemann often used his centesimal potencies for crisis and acute diseases, and switched to the LM potencies for constitutional treatment. This is not an absolute rule but a tendency one sees throughout the cases of his last three years (1840-1843).
Administering the LM potencies
As mentioned, the LM base potency is made from the 3C potency. Hahnemann’'s low potencies were the 6, 12, 24, and 30C, and his high potencies reached 50 to 200C and the LM 1 to 30. In some ways, the LM potencies possess many of the positive qualities of both a low and high potencies in balance.
The lower degrees of the LM potency act more deeply than the 6 to 30C but they are also more gentle then 200C or IM for the delicate or weak constitution. They reach a depth of cure without producing overly strong primary actions and rapid aggravations like the high C’s. They have the stability and consistency of the low potency C’s, but the power to cure deep chronic diseases like the high potencies.
One can tell from Hahnemann’s Paris journals that he considered the LM 1 a higher potency than the 30C, as he sometime started people with a 30C for the acute and then switched to the LM potency for the chronic conditions. Also, if the lower potencies up to 30C were insufficient, he would then switch to the LM scale and work upward. In some cases, he began with an anti-psoric in 30C and then moved over to the LM’s. He also stated in the Organon that the 50,000:1 dilution ratio is more powerful than the 100:1 ratio, even at the lowest degrees. One reason is many succussions can be used without “forcing” any excess energy into the pharmaceutical solution.
So we can see that the LM’s are not “low potencies,” and like any other remedy, shouldn’t be repeated in a mechanical fashion. They aggravate just like all other homeopathic remedy if misused. I know this personally because I aggravated a number of cases in the beginning of my LM career. I quickly found out that the LM 1 would aggravate certain sensitive patients and those with organic pathology. In general, aggravations caused by Lms’ are of a shorter duration than the high centesimal potencies. This is another reason they are safer than the ultrahigh potency centesimals in many conditions. The great advantage is versatility. When reaction is too strong, repetition of the remedy can be slowed down. Conversely, it can be increased to stimulate reaction. The remedy can be diluted as many times as needed to suit the susceptibility of the patient.
If the person will overreact to the action of potencies higher than 30C, it is best to use the lower potencies like 6, 12, or 24C. I tend to use the lower centesimal potencies in medicinal solution and the split dose where I fear aggravations or pathology, and want to avoid a crisis. Then I work my way up to the 30C, change to the LM 1, and go through the LM scale. These sensitive patients often do not do very well on 200C, 1M. etc. In fact, many of them are incurable by the centesimal potency system alone. Hahnemann used this method also, although I did not confirm this fact until I studied his casebooks many years later.
It is a false claim to say that the LM’s can be given daily or every other day for weeks, months, and years. Some suggest giving potencies like LM 6, LM 18, or some other odd potency daily, rather then using the complete graduated potency scale 0/1 to 0/30 in an artistic manner. The Paris casebooks show that Hahnemann never gave his remedies in such a mechanistic manner! The healing artist takes into account the constitutional sensitivity or the nature of the disease and individualize their dose and potency properly. Mechanical methods are prone to causing overmedication.
Only when necessary
In the footnote to aphorism 247, Hahnemann discusses what he said in the 5th Organon, updated with the new LM posology methods of the 6th edition. When he introduces the concept of the daily dose he says that the LM potency may be taken daily “when necessary.” The first sentence of aphorism 247 of the 6th Organon reads, “During treatment, every noticeable progressing and conspicuously increasing improvement is a state which, as long as it persists, generally excludes any repetition of the medicine being used because all the good being produced by the medicine is still hastening towards completion.” This is because the vital force is moving toward the cure at a maximum rate, and any more doses will only slow down the cure.
Hahnemann rarely used the daily dose for very long, and always interspersed his doses with a period of placebo and a period of waiting and watching. The idea that Hahnemann gave the daily dose of the LM’s for months or years is a complete myth, as proven by his writings and Paris case journals. The 6th Organon offers a guidebook on how to use the LM potency scale safely and effectively, by opening in the lowest degrees (0/1, 0/2, 0/3, etc.), and then ascending through the potency range (up to 0/30). LM’s must be treated with the same respect as other potencies. When the daily dose is æ “not necessary” it will rapidly produce an overmedicated state in which there will be aggravations or accessory symptoms that change the natural symptom pattern. There is quite a bit of misunderstanding on this point. Overmedication always causes side effects, changes the natural symptom pattern, and slows down the cure.
He also suggests starting the case with the “lowest degrees”, which his Paris casebooks show to be 0/1 to 0/3, and more rarely 0/4, 0/5, 0/6,0/7. This is the first octave of LM potencies, with the 0/9 starting the next range.
There are times when a low potency like 30C appears to only palliate, yet the 200C produces unproductive aggravations that weaken the vitality. This is because the pathology is too deep for the low potency (6-30C), and the high potencies (200C- 1M) only cause aggravations without amelioration, and loss of vitality. In such cases, the LM potency will cure when the centesimal potency will only palliate or cause harm. This is area where the LM’s are ideal, as they act more gently and safely than high potency C’s if carefully adjusted. The LM potency is also useful for the elderly, where the high potency C’s may be counterproductive but cure is still possible.
The LM’s act smoothly, considering their relatively high potency. For this reason, the LM’s are far more suitable than the 200C and I M for a good number of patients. The gaps between the 30C, 200C, 1M, and 10M potencies are too large for many constitutions and for chronic conditions. This Kentian system only offers seven potencies, while there are 30 different microtonal LM potencies. These individuals, who may experience unproductive aggravations and accessory symptoms from the 200C or 1M (especially the dry dose), usually do very well on the LM’s when they are given properly.
These are some of the differences. The LM’s are safe and effective when the potency, succussions, and dose are individualized, and the patient is not overmedicated. The microtonal series of 30 graduated LM potencies is much more similar to development of degenerative chronic diseases and miasms then the radical jumps of the centesimals. For this reason it is naturally suited to slow - developing, long-lasting chronic diseases and miasms, or to patients who have undergone serious suppressive treatments and continuous overmedication.
It has only been in the last few years that I have the advantage of reading the microfiches of Hahnemann's Paris casebooks. This has allowed me to personally review the records of his cases from the LM period (1840-1843). By carefully reading the 6th Organon and the Paris casebooks, much more information has come to light. It is unfortunate that much of what is written regarding the LM potencies has not been widely available.
This situation is finally starting to change, as homeopaths experienced in the 4th Organon method take up experiments with the revisions introduced in the 5th and 6th editions. Today's students are better educated and have more literature then we did back in 1970. Those who are well-trained in the classical methods of the 4th Organon and the single dose, wait and watch method are well-positioned to test the Paris methods of the 1840s.
The method of the Organon is an artistic method that must be individualized to the patient. There are no preconceived schedules that can guide one. Taking a dose daily, or on alternate days, may be correct for one person, while one dose per week, month, or year is sufficient for another. What a homeopath learns is when to wait and watch, as well as when to act to speed the cure. Much of modern posology is still 167 years behind the times, but “the times they are a’changin’.”