Monthly E- Newsletter August 2008
Interview with Dr. Harry Van Der Zee MD.
Interviewed by Dr. Pawan S. Chandak
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Dear Dr. Harry, Welcome to modernhomoeopathy.com !.
We are feeling happy to have with you today.
Nowadays many homoeopaths are using Patents, combination, biochemics, mother tinctures at a time. What do you think due to such things is there any chance of Suppression ?
What's your view towards concept of suppression as told by Dr. Hahnemann.
Harry Van Der Zee: Thank you for your welcome and invitation Dr Pawan.
The idea of suppression is connected to fear, and fear I believe is not a good guide. This doesn't mean it is not possible to suppress symptoms. It's possible and any person with a same mind will avoid suppression if s/he is aware of it. To work as a homeopath though guided by a fear to do something wrong, suppression or whatever, is not the best way of being creative. And creativity, being open to what a patient needs, is a prerequisite for having good results. Homeopathy can be used on many levels and I appreciate all of them. The level used is depending on many factors. Let me just discuss a few. It depends on the skills and nature of a homeopath what would work best in practice. Some will have the best results using a clinical approach, even including combination remedies, whereas trying to work with vital sensation would turn into a disaster. Another factor is a very practical one, time available. If hundreds of people are on your doorstep everyday you need a system that is effective, costing little time.
Classical homeopathy, certainly as it is used in Europe and the US is somewhat elitist as to the amount of time and money invested per consultation. Also not all patients are interested in deep digging interviews. Suppression in a sense summaries the whole human condition. We are suppressing our true nature and deny the oneness with our source and due to that suffer. Pushing symptoms away without becoming aware of their root is missing an opportunity, but we should not be afraid that through this the opportunity is lost. Actually we have never lost contact with our true nature, only the awareness of it. Although it seems like there is a royal way in homeopathy that goes to the core and can bring true transformation, making the symptoms obsolete, this doesn't mean that homeopaths following others ways that fit better to their nature are doing work of less value. Believing that would be suppressing our colleagues, so let's not do that, and stick to our own business. How I work with patients and something between me and the patient, and if you like God. What goes on between other homeopaths and their patients is simply not my business, and assuming to know what is best for them is vanity.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Can you please tell us about your life from childhood till now.
Also tell us any special reason behind Interest & Conversion in Homoeopathy ?
Harry Van Der Zee: I hope you do not mind that I keep this short. I was largely asleep until my nineteenth when my present wife opened my heart and her wise father my mind. In that time I started meditating and studied a wide range of topics around philosophy, religion, psychology etc. At some point I decided that the growth of human potential was what I wanted to work with professionally. I had no idea yet how and decided that studying medicine first would give me the best range of options. After finishing my studies I had interviews with patients aiming at getting awareness about what was really the issue with them, what was the story their symptoms were telling them. This was rewarding but something was missing. I felt I needed a tool to be able to use the insights more to the benefit of the patient. In a series of dreams I was then made aware of homeopathy. What I knew about homeopathy did not interest me. Even if without side-effects, the concept of as pill for a complaint was not my kind of thing. After these very interesting guiding dreams I visited a homeopathic doctor and then heard about classical homeopathy, the work of George Vithoulkas, and understood that homeopathy in essence is concerned with guiding a person in unfolding his or her true potential. That's when I started studying and practicing homeopathy.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Who is the Man Behind you in your Homoeopathic Life. I mean who is your Guru or Teacher or Guide or Inspirer?
Harry Van Der Zee: I think, starting with Vithoulkas, there have been many all at the right time and place. The guide that brought me my dreams I have no name for but he is the most important one. Many years later I met him in a dream, a wise old man sparkling with light. We embraced and from that day on my case-taking improved considerably. When I later read Rajan Sankaran about Vital Sensation I realised that I had kind of naturally developed a similar approach of coming to the core of the case. In recent years my work is mostly focussed on working with collective afflictions, like epidemics and collective trauma. Actually trying to address the question 'what needs to be cured' on a collective level. Here homeopathy has huge potential but we make little use of it. My inspirer here has been Peter Chappell.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: What is your opinion about the present trends in Homoeopathy as regards various Approach, hypothesis and beliefs with respect to - classical homoeopathy equivalent to single dose and single remedy etc ?
Harry Van Der Zee: homeopaths are as individualistic as the solutions they seek for their patients. I'm open to many approaches as long as I can somehow understand the reasoning behind the hypothesis and can find confirmation in the results. The concept of one dose of one remedy for one patients that will work for a life time is an ideal concept. With some patients we get close to this ideal, other may need a more varied approach. As soon as we start to make rules of how a homeopath should work we may be sure there will be cases that will fail unless we break the rules. So taking what the patient needs is for me a higher source than any theory. Like with cancer, patients sometimes get several remedies and many doses and with success. Sticking to the rule of single remedy would mean giving up the patient. We should always try to treat the largest meaningful totality that we can perceive and if supporting that with a organ or disease specific approach improves the results, go for it.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Will you please tell me in brief status of Homoeopathy includes your personal experience or problems you have faced in Homoeopathic Practice in Netherlands.
Harry Van Der Zee: The Netherlands allow homeopaths and patients a lot of freedom so in principal this is a great country to live and work in as a homeopath. The greatest problems, if not all, I encounter in myself and not in the outside world, although I may tend to project them there.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: What's your view towards Necessity for reproving of homoeopathic medicines which were proved during Hahnemannian time?
Is it really necessary and if yes does it can bring change in our Materia Medica with new discoveries ?
Harry Van Der Zee: any proving will for sure give more information, and with the development of consciousness and change of culture in the world proving of today will give other information than those performed in Hahnemann's time. For me patients that have responded very well to a specific substance are a rich well of information to learn more about that substance. Especially regarding the general theme and the transformation the substance is connected to. With more and more substances our materia medica and repertories will become very massive, like a jungle without a map. Developing insight into what a substance is really about is essential. A well understood substance may need just one page and whatever the symptoms in a patient are if the core matches that is the most important thing. Having 100 pages about a substance without any idea about an essence or central theme is difficult. Here doing a new proving might help, or interviewing a patient that by luck got it and made a drastic change may help.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak:Is there any necessity for up gradation of 6th edition of Organon of Medicine ?
Harry Van Der Zee: Yes, but the homeopathic community is not ready yet to accept the consequences. We need to be willing to think beyond Hahnemann, to like him keep asking questions and look for answers. Hahnemann might if he had still lived probably published his 20th edition by now.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Views regarding Importance of diagnosis of disease in Homoeopathy. Is it must ?
Harry Van Der Zee: not always. In those cases where the simillimum is enough to fully overcome the disease the diagnosis is irrelevant. If the simillimum does not cure then knowing the diagnosis may help to understand the process, to know what the course will be, and to know your limitations. Another important reason is because a disease specific homeopathic approach can complement the simillimum. If a patient responds well to the simillimum but is not fully cured, the symptoms of the disease are those we need to prescribe on to get better results. This is where classical and clinical homeopathy complement each other, and where a 7th edition of the Organon should be specific about. Often it is hard to find one remedy that covers the totality of a disease so clinical homeopaths make combinations. Peter Chappell found a way to make a simillimum for a disease without using substance. This is a very promising development making it possible to complement the simillimum for the patient with one for the disease. I've seen wonderful results in cases where the patient simillimum alone was not enough.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Distribution of Preventive medicine in various Genus Epidemicus like Chikungunya, Viral fever, Conjunctivitis. Are you agreeing with Genus Epidemicus concept of Dr. Hahnemann if not then why? As Dr. Praful Vijaykar disagree Genus Epidemicus concept ?
Harry Van Der Zee: Also here I feel a new edition of the Organon could go into more deeply. With epidemics and other collective diseases we should understand that now it is not an individual that is ill, but a collective. The genus epidemicus approach is exactly the same as individual prescription, but now the totality it is prescribed for is not one human being but one human collective. For diseases like these we should look for remedies that can be given to cure and prevent, ideally one remedy for one disease. If with epidemics like AIDS or malaria we would treat enough individuals we may expect that the role and purpose of the disease will become fulfilled without having to cause more suffering. Here we are treating the collective, so we need to get an understanding of the role and purpose of collective diseases, of what needs to be cured in the collective. Homeopathy has hardly begun to understand the possibilities here, let be to implement them. My work right now is basically on this, with AIDS in Africa as the main focus.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: What's your opinion about the Miasmatic classification made by some homoeopath like Cancer Miasm, Malaria Miasm, AIDS Miasm ?
Is it necessary to make separate classification rather than Hahnemannian classification Psora, Sycosis, Syphilis.
Harry Van Der Zee: Again a subject where a next Organon could shed more light on. First of all the understanding of miasms is very limited. In homeopathy we actually only look at one aspect of them, pathology. In my understanding miasms are like collective archetypes that are instrumental in bringing about change and evolution in the collective. The formative field of the change that is needed can bring about a collective disease as expression of this and as instrument to bring about this change in individuals and the collective. The results of this disease and how this continues to influence the lives of patients and their offspring is what we call miasms. A deeper understanding of them would include their role and purpose, and makes clear that miasms are not something to fight but deserve our appreciation and assistance in bringing about the change they serve with less suffering. All the disease you mention above, but also trauma on an individual or a collective level are related to miasms. Actually trauma seems the first expression followed by epidemic diseases, like cholera follows the outbreak of war, or recurrent tonsillitis an unexpressed grief.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: What advise you will give for younger homoeopathic generation. As there in different School with different opinion all over the world like Sankaran, Predictive Homoeopathy, Vithoulkas, Sehgal group etc.
Harry Van Der Zee: I'd say follow your heart and find your own path. Although all these schools and approaches may be confusing it is also a wealth to be able to choose from so many. Any of these approaches and teachers are wonderful. You as a student need to find the one that is wonderful to you today.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Tell us more about Research work done by you or any project or study in which you are working? Tell us more about your work with Peter Chapell on PC1
Harry Van Der Zee: Our research concerns the efficacy of PC1 for HIV/AIDS in Africa and India. Africa because there is where 25 million infected people are waiting for help, India because with an incidence nearing 1% and a wealth of homeopathic doctors is the best place to do a proper study. From clinical experience we know PC1 works very well. It is the best homeopathy has to offer for AIDS, and because it is a simple genus epidemicus approach, also the most practical one. Especially in Africa, where there are only a handful of homeopaths, an approach based on one remedy for a diagnosis demands little skills and time is ideal.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Views regarding combinations in Homoeopathy? Are you in favor or not ?
If in favor then how & why? Any Research based justice you can give for it ?
Is it going to harm the Hahnemannian concept of Single medicine or Organon of Medicine ?
Harry Van Der Zee: As I said above a combination of a patient specific and disease specific approach is an improvement in homeopathic methodology. It is intelligent, practical and effective, and absolutely in line with Hahnemann's thinking. When the simillimum has done what it could a new prescription should be made based on the remaining symptoms. Provided that the simillimum for the patients was indeed well chose what will remain are symptoms typical for the disease, and for these a second simillimum should be prescribed.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Tell us more about your work on AIDS
Harry Van Der Zee: This is still grassroots work but something I'm happy to spend my time and energy for. AIDS is about transforming the quality of intimate relationships. AIDS is about transforming egocentric and selfish forms of relationships to those based on genuine love, care and respect. I will tell more about this during my seminar in Mumbai September 27. Seen in this light AIDS is a gift to humanity, but one received with much suffering. There is not one single soul in Africa that is not suffering from the AIDS miasm, either because of being infected, or by losing dear ones. With PC1 we hope to be able to help the African people and AIDS-patients in other countries to make the social change it is related to with less suffering. That a dear wish!
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: What's your opinion on the concept of 'Unprejudiced Observer' How you apply in your practice or How you give direction to your students ?
Harry Van Der Zee: I've stopped private practice and teaching to focus on AIDS so right now I'm not the right person to ask this question to. What I can say is that curiosity is a good start. Being really curious to get to know a person, the symptoms, the story behind them, the real state behind them. Forget what you believe you know is another one. Let go of the idea that you are responsible of finding a remedy another.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Now many new medicines are emerging that have not been proved yet. What is your take on this issue?. There is lots of debate on this issue.
Harry Van Der Zee: If I understand the hypothesis, the theory, I have no problem. None of Peter Chappell's remedies had initially been proven. One AIDS-patient by narrating the amazing effect of PC1 on him revealed to me the whole story. More I did not need to know. Provings are wonderful and homeopaths should do them a lot, but there are more ways of getting to know a substance and to ignore them is not in the interest of our patients. He who cures is right, so let the results speak for themselves.
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Any books or publications by you ?
Harry Van Der Zee:
Miasms in Labour
Homeopathy for Birth Trauma
Dr. Pawan S. Chandak: Thank you so much for sharing your life and thoughts with us today. It has been a pleasure to hold this discussion and I hope the interaction will continue in future too to support our common goal of promoting homeopathy. Thank you!
Harry Van Der Zee: thank you Pawan, you and your readers are most welcome.