Dr Aleena Thomas
Dr Kent has divided the mental generals under the heading will and emotion, understanding and intellect and memory. In ‘Repertory of the homoeopathic materia medica’, the Mind chapter has not been categorised under these domains. This is an attempt to categorise the rubrics of mind chapter of Kent’s repertory under the headings will, emotion, understanding and intellect and memory.
Key words: Mental generals, Will and Emotion, Understanding and Intellect, Memory
Mental symptoms play a very vital role in unfolding the true image of the disease but practically it is very difficult to obtain this from the sick person and also difficult to understand and interpret them correctly. According to the Kentian philosophy mental generals are the most important symptoms of a patient and given primary importance in his repertory which has been classified under the following headings
- Perversions of Will and Emotion
Will means ‘The desire or wish’1
Emotion means ‘A strong feeling deriving from one’s circumstances, mood or relationships with others.’2
- Perversions of understanding and intellect
Understand means ‘perceive the intended meaning of (words, a language or a speaker)’2
Intellect means ‘the faculty of reasoning and understanding objectively, especially with regard to abstract matters’2
- Perversions of memory
Memory means ‘the faculty by which the mind stores and remembers information’2
Kent followed an alphabetical arrangement of rubrics even in the mind chapter for the purpose of easy reference which made it difficult task for users to quickly find the rubrics under the above mentioned categories.
Here the mind rubrics of Kent’s repertory are tried to classify in the following manner.
|Will||Emotion||Understanding and Intellect||Memory|
Mental illness refers to a wide range of mental health conditions, disorders that affect your mood, thinking and behaviour. Many people have mental health concerns from various stages of life. But a mental health concern becomes a mental illness when ongoing signs and symptoms cause frequent stress and affect your ability to function. A mental illness can make you miserable and can cause problems in your daily life, such as at school or work or in relationships. In most cases, symptoms can be managed with a combination of medications and talk therapy (psychotherapy). One of the most efficacious and effective way to treat these disorders is through homoeopathic intervention.
During homoeopathic case taking, physician read the mind of the patient and try to find out the medicine based on symptom similarity. So, the mental symptoms achieve the special importance in homoeopathic prescribing. Peculiar mental symptoms and special sensations are given primary importance in homoeopathic treatment. As we know that diseases originate in the vital molecular processes, obviously, mental and physical symptoms, whether subjective or objective, are the expressions of these molecular errors. Mind, consciousness, feeling, emotions, understandings, thought, sensations, mental symptoms etc., are the functions of a complex material system, known as brain and nervous system. Homeopathy treats the patient as a whole (in mental and physical plane together) on symptoms similarity. Homoeopathy always gives more importance to patient’s subjective feelings and sensations and for their betterment.
The unique characteristic symptoms of mind will always be considered as peculiar and characteristic symptom of the patient or individual (individualization). This striking symptom helps in finding out the right remedy for easy cure. Homoeopathy makes an attempt to judge the situation quite differently, also try to use physician’s intellectual image and select the remedy accordingly. However these mind symptoms also help a homoeopathic physician to find out the right remedy through the medium of repertorization. The homoeopathic prescription has the ability to liberate vital energies locked up in the body, so that a healthier self is experienced with a greater sense of vitality, energy and well-being.4
Dr Kent’s ideology was greatly influenced by Swedenborgian philosophy which can be measured from his writings that are published in various places including compilations in lesser writings. Swedenborg differentiated the mind into three hierarchical structures. At the top was the “Soul”, which is represented by Will. The middle level is “Reason”, which is represented by intellect and intention. The third and last level of “Psyche” consist of Imagination, memory and desire. This is the classification Kent has used in his philosophy.5
Dr Kent in his ‘Lectures of philosophy’ says “The man wills and understand; the cadaver does not will and does not understands; then that which takes its departure is that which knows and wills. It is that which can be changed and is prior to the body. The combination of these two, the will and understanding, constitute a man; conjoined they make a life and activity they manufacture the body and cause all things of the body. With the will and understanding operating in order we have a healthy man. Then man is the will and understanding, and the house which he lives in is his body.”6
In the mind chapter of Kent’s repertory we can find more than 300 rubrics related to will, around 150 rubrics related to emotion and 86 rubrics related to intellect and understanding with few rubrics under memory. This categorisation of rubrics gives as an opportunity for quick reference of the symptoms under the corresponding headings for the accurate selection of rubrics.
Mind chapter of Kent’s repertory is being the largest chapter with more than 520 rubrics it is arranged alphabetically and not following the Kent’s philosophy of classification of mental symptoms. This is a small attempt to classify the mind rubrics of Kent’s repertory under the headings will, emotion, understanding and memory for the better understanding, interpretation and an easy selection of the mind rubrics.
- Google- https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/will
- Google- https://www.google.com/search
- Kent J.T. Repertory of the homoeopathic materia medica. New Delhi: B Jain Publisher 1961;1-95
- Ahmed R Munir, Fundamentals of repertories: Alchemy of Homoeopathic methodology, Hi-Line Publishers and Distributors Pvt Ltd, 2016 ;287
- Kent J. T. A.M., M.D., Lectures on Homoeopathic Philosophy, New Delhi: B Jain Publisher 1993;21
Dr Aleena Thomas
Department of Case taking and Repertory
Under the guidance of Dr Praveen Kumar
Government Homoeopathic Medical College and Hospital, Bengaluru