Sankaran’s ‘Sensation Method’- Homeopathy Crippled by Lack of Basic Scientific Awareness
Corner-stone of ‘Sankaran Method’ is classifying drugs into ‘animal’, ‘plant’, and ‘mineral’ kingdoms. Then each kingdom is related with particular group of ‘vital sensations’. Plant remedies are used for individuals having ‘vital sensations’ belonging to the group of ‘sensitivity’, animal remedies are used for those having ‘viatal sensations’ belonging to the class of ‘survival instincts’, and mineral remedies for ‘structural consciousness’.
First, we have to analyze the concept of ‘remedy kingdoms’. Medicinal properties of any remedy are determined by the chemical structure and properties of the individual chemical molecules they contain. Because, it is individual drug molecules that act upon biological molecules, produce inhibitions, molecular pathology and associated symptoms. During potentization, it is the individual drug molecules that undergo molecular imprinting, and as such, it is the individual molecular imprints that act as therapeutic agents. In the absence of this molecular perspective of our medicinal substances, we fall prey to all sorts of unscientific theories that misguide us gravely.
Let us consider a particular remedy belonging to plant kingdom. The molecular composition as well as chemical and medicinal properties of the particular drug sample will be decided by various factors. It will contain kingdom-specific, family-specific, species-specific, variety specific, plant-specific and environmental-specific chemical molecules. Part of plant from which the drug substance is extracted is also a decisive factor. Nux vomica tinctures prepared from seeds, fruits, flowers, leaves, bark or root of nux vomica plant will have different molecular composition and medicinal properties. Some molecules will be common to all samples from a particular plant. Certain other molecules will be common to all samples from a particular species. There will be some molecules common to family, as well as some common to plant kingdom as a whole. Plants belonging to same family will have some common genes, which would produce some similar proteins and enzymes, that would lead to similar molecular processes and synthesis of similar molecules. There would be kingdom-specific, family specific, species specific, variety specific and individual specific and tissue specific chemicals in a plant drug.
As per this perspective, medicinal properties of a given drug substance of ‘plant kingdom’ will be decided by the collective properties of organ specific, plant specific, variety specific, species specific, family specific and kingdom specific chemical molecules contained in them. It is obvious that it is wrong to think that medicinal properties of a drug substance could be assumed by the ‘kingdom’ to which it belongs.
This is applicable to all drugs belonging to mineral as well as animal kingdoms.
When animal or plant substances are disintegrated or divided into individual molecules, they become similar to mineral drugs at molecular level. There are many drugs which could not be included in any particular kingdom. Petroleum is a mineral, but it is the product of disintegration of animal and vegetable matter under ocean beds. Acetic acid is a mineral, but it is prepared from vegetable products. How can we say lactic acid, prepared from milk is plant remedy or mineral remedy? All of us consider calc carb as mineral drug, but exactly it is the ‘middle layer of oyster shells’, and as such, is an animal drug. Kreasote is combination of phenols prepared from wood, and how can we say it is ‘plant’ or ‘mineral’?
At molecular level, the dividing line between ‘plant, animal and mineral’ kingdoms is irrelevant. It is the molecular structure and chemical properties that decide the medicinal properties. To be more specific, it is the functional groups or moieties that act as decisive factor. Classifying drugs on the basis of ‘kingdoms’ and assigning certain ‘mental level sensations’ to them is totally unscientific and illogical. It illustrates the pathetic level of scientific awareness that rules the propagators of ‘sankaran method’.
Rajan Sankaran’s ‘sensation’ method is based on the concepts of ‘deeper level vital sensations’ and corresponding ‘remedy kingdoms’. This method has nothing in common with classical homeopathy, where symptoms belonging to mentals, physical generals and particulars, with their qualifications such as causations, sensations, locations, modalities and concomitants decide the selection of similimum.
According to this theory, ‘structure’ is the basic sensation of ‘minerals’, ‘sensitivity’ is the basic sensation of ‘plants’ and ‘survival’ is the basic sensation of ‘animals’.
According to this methods, case taking involves an inquiry into ‘deeper levels of consciousness’, by prompting the patient to introspect from ‘symptoms’ into ‘deeper, deeper and still deeper’ levels so that his basic ‘vital sensation’ is explored. Then this ‘vital sensation’ is used to decide the ‘kingdom’ to which the patient belong. Remedies are selected from these ‘remedy kingdoms’.
The most dogmatic part of this theory is the relating of ‘vital sensation’ with ‘remedy kingdoms’. On what basis Dr Sankaran says ‘sensitivity’ is the ‘vital sensation’ of ‘plants’? Any logical or scientific explanation for this relationship? If we go through materia medica of various drugs, we can see many ‘animal’ and ‘minerals drugs’ having sensitivity of high order. How can anybody claiming to be a homeopath ignore the whole drug provings and materia medica to declare that ‘sensitivity’ is the ‘vital sensation’ of ‘plants’ only?
When a homeopath says ‘sensitivity’ is the ‘vital sensation of plants, it means all plant remedies have produced such a characteristic sensation in healthy individuals during drug proving. To say ‘animal drugs’ have ‘vital sensation’ of ‘survival instinct’, a homeopath should be capable of showing examples from materia medica to justify that statement. Same with ‘vital sensations’ of mineral drugs. Our materia medica does not show that only ‘plant drugs’ produced ‘sensitivity’ in provers. We can see many ‘animal’ and ‘mineral’ drugs with high order of ‘sensitivity’. If not from materia medica, where from Dr Sankaran ‘invented’ that ‘vital sensation’ of ‘sensitivity’ is the basic characteristic of ‘plant kingdom’?
See the rubric ‘sensitive’ in ‘mind’ of kent repertory:
[Kent]Mind : SENSITIVE, oversensitive:- Acon., Aesc., Aeth., Alum., Am-c., Anac., Ang., Ant-c., Apis., Arg-n., Arn., Ars., Ars-i., Asaf., Asar., Aur., Bar-c., Bell., Bor., Bov., Bry., Calc., Calc-p., Calc-s., Camph., Cann-s., Canth., Carb-an., Carb-s., Carb-v., Cast., Caust., Cham., Chin., Chin-a., Chin-s., Cic., Cina., Clem., Cocc., Coff., Colch., Coloc., Con., Crot-h., Cupr., Daph., Dig., Dros., Ferr., Ferr-ar., Ferr-p., Fl-ac., Gels., Gran., Hep., Hyos., Ign., Iod., Kali-ar., Kali-c., Kali-i., Kali-n., Kali-p., Kali-s., Kreos., Lac-c., Lach., Laur., Lyc., Lyss., Mag-m., Med., Meph., Merc., Mez., Mosch., Nat-a., Nat-c., Nat-m., Nat-p., Nat-s., Nit-ac., Nux-v., Ph-ac., Phos., Plat., Plb., Psor., Puls., Ran-b., Sabad., Sabin., Samb., Sanic., Sars., Seneg., Sep., Sil., Spig., Stann., Staph., Sulph., Tab., Teucr., Ther., Thuj., Valer., Verat., Viol-t., Zinc.
In this list, 46 remedies belong to ‘mineral kingdom’: alumina, ammo carb, antim crud, arg nit, ars, ars iod, aur, baryta, borax, calc, calc phos, calc sulph, carb sulph, causticum, cupr, ferr, ferr ars, ferr ph, fl acid, hep, iod, kali group, mag mur, mercury, natrum group, nit acid, phos acid, phos, platinum, plumbum, sanicula, silicea, stannum, suplh, zinc
12 remedies are from ‘animal kingdom’: Apis, cantharis, carb an, crot h, lac can, lach, med, moschus, psorinum, sep, theri.
Remaining 56 remedies are of ‘plant kingdom’.
On what basis sankaran says ‘sensitivity’ is the ‘vital sensation’ of plant kingdom? How can anybody say persons who are ‘sensitive’ at the deeper’ level need ‘plant remedies only? How can this theory be called homeopathy?
Similarly, if we examine various rubrics belonging to ‘survival’ instinct, or ‘structural’ sensations, we can see they are not limited to animal or mineral remedies only. Many ‘plant remedies’ have such symptoms.
According to Rajan Sankaran, FEAR is the indication of VITAL SENSATION of ‘survival instincts’ which need an ANIMAL KINGDOM drug. Based on which materia medica Dr Rajan Sankaran says ‘vital sensation’ of ‘fear’ indicates only ‘animal kingdom remedy’?
Please see the MIND rubric FEAR in Kent Repertory:
[Kent]Mind : FEAR:- Absin., Acet-ac., Acon., Aeth., Agar., Agn., Aloe., Alum., Am-c., Anac., Ang., Ant-c., Ant-t., Arg-n., Ars., Ars-i., Asaf., Aur., Bapt., Bar-c., Bar-m., Bell., Bor., Bry., Bufo., Cact., Calad., Calc., Calc-p., Calc-s., Camph., Cann-i., Cann-s., Caps., Carb-an., Carb-s., Carb-v., Cast., Caust., Cham., Chin., Chin-a., Chlor., Cic., Cimic., Coca., Coc-c., Cocc., Coff., Coloc., Con., Croc., Crot-h., Cupr., Daph., Dig., Dros., Dulc., Echi., Elaps., Eupho., Ferr., Ferr-ar., Ferr-p., Form., Gels., Gent-c., Glon., Graph., Hell., Hep., Hydr-ac., Hyos., Hyper., Ign., Iod., Ip., Kali-ar., Kali-br., Kali-c., Kali-i., Kali-n., Kali-p., Kali-s., Lach., Lil-t., Lob., Lyc., Lyss., Mag-c., Mag-m., Manc., Meli., Merc., Merc-i-r., Mez., Mosch., Mur-ac., Murx., Nat-a., Nat-c., Nat-m., Nat-p., Nat-s., Nicc., Nit-ac., Nux-v., Onos., Op., Petr., Phos., Phyt., Pip-m., Plat., Psor., Puls., Ran-b., Raph., Rheum., Rhod., Rhus-t., Rhus-v., Ruta., Sec., Sep., Sil., Spig., Spong., Squil., Stann., Staph., Stram., Stront., Stry., Sul-ac., Sulph., Tab., Tarent., Thuj., Til., Valer., Verat., Zinc.
See. 75 drugs belong to PLANT KINGDOM! 54 are MINERAL drugs! Only 9 ANIMAL drugs! How Rajan Sankaran say only ANIMAL drugs are indicated for ‘vital sensation’ of ‘survival instincts’? By this approach, the practitioner who looks only ‘animal’ drugs is actually deprived of a large number of drugs belonging to other ‘kingdoms’, one of which may be the real similimum.
There may be many patients ‘sensitive at deeper levels’ who may require ‘animal’ or ‘mineral’ drugs if we select drugs using homeopathic method of totality of symptoms. Limiting all ‘sensitive’ patients to ‘plant kingdom’ remedies may be detrimental in such cases.
Rajan Sankaran says FEAR is the expression if ‘vital sensation of survival instincts’ which the ‘theme’ or quality of ‘animals’. As such, sankaran method uses only ‘animal remedies’ for people exhibiting ‘deep seated’ fear.
Homeopathic understanding of medicinal properties of drug substances are based on symptoms produced in healthy individuals during drug provings. Those symptoms are listed in our materia medica and repertories. Similimum by comparing symptoms of patients with symptoms of drugs, which is the basis of our therapeutic principle ‘similia similibus curentur’.
Please go to KENT REPERTORY> MIND > FEAR: Aconite, Argentum Nit, Aurum, Bell, Borax, Calc Phos, Calc, Carb sulph, Cicuta, Digitalis, Graphites, Ignatia, Kali Ars, Lyco, Lyssin, Nat Carb, Phos, Platina, Psor, Sepia and Stram are the drugs listed with THREE MARKS under FEAR.
As per homeopathic method of similimum being selected on the basis of our materia medica, these are the prominent drugs to be considered in patients with characteristic sensation of FEAR.
But, according to Sankaran, FEAR indicates ‘vital sensation’ of ‘survival instincts’, which needs ‘animal remedies’ only. Only animal remedies found in above list are Lyssin, Psorinum and Sepia. Homeopaths practicing Sankaran method will obviously ignore all other drugs in this list, since they are not ‘animal remedies’. Does this approach strengthen homeopaths, or debilitate them?
I would like to know, from where Dr Snkaran got the idea that only ‘plant remedies’ have ‘fear’ and ‘survival instincts’? Which drug proving? Which materia medica? A person cannot claim to be homeopath by ignoring all available homeopathic literature on materia medica, and producing materia medica and symptoms from his fancies.
Some people claim, Sankaran’s concepts are based on his ‘observations’.
Did he conducted drug provings of all drugs and ‘observe’ their symptoms? Did he prove the symptoms given in our materia medica are not reliable? Which proving showed him sepia, lyssin and psorinum has more ‘fear’ than phos, bell, stram or arg nit?
Would Sankaran say a homeopath cannot cure a patient having ‘survival instincts’ and ‘fear’ using phosporous or stramonium, if they turn out to be similimum on the basis of totality of symptoms. Should we avoid phos, since it is not an ‘animal drug’?
Please see following rubrics:
[Kent]Mind : FIGHT, wants to:- Bell., Bov., Hipp., Hyos., Merc., Sec.
[Kent]Mind : QUARRELSOME:- Acon., Agar., Alum., Ambr., Am-c., Anac., Anan., Ant-t., Arn., Ars., Aster., Aur., Bar-c., Bell., Bor., Bov., Brom., Bry., Calc., Calc-s., Camph., Canth., Caps., Caust., Cench., Cham., Chel., Chin., Con., Cor-r., Croc., Crot-h., Cupr., Dig., Dulc., Elaps., Ferr., Ferr-ar., Fl-ac., Hipp., Hyos., Ign., Ip., Kali-ar., Kali-c., Kali-i., Lach., Lepi., Lyc., Lyss., Merc., Merl., Mez., Mosch., Nat-a., Nat-c., Nat-m., Nat-s., Nicc., Nit-ac., Nux-v., Olnd., Pall., Petr., Ph-ac., Phos., Plat., Plb., Psor., Ran-b., Rat., Rheum., Ruta., Seneg., Sep., Spong., Stann., Staph., Stram., Stront., Sul-ac., Sulph., Tarent., Thea., Thuj., Til., Verat., Verat-v., Viol-t., Zinc.
According to sankaran, ‘quarelling’ and ‘fighting’ indicates ‘survival instincts’, which require ‘animal remedies’.
Under the rubric “Mind : FIGHT, wants to”, not a single ‘animal remedy’ is seen, except hipp.
Under ‘quarrelsome’, ambra, asterias,cantharis, cenchris, corralium, crotalus, elaps, hipp, lach, lyssin, psor, sep, spong, and tarent are the animal remedies.
Would you say, all remedies other than these ‘animal remedies’ should be eliminated while selecting a similimum for this patient?
According to sankaran, JEALOUSY is a ‘vital sensation’ of ‘ANIMAL KINGDOM’.
See this rubric:
[Kent]Mind : JEALOUSY:- Anan., Apis., Calc-p., Calc-s., Camph., Cench., Coff., Gall-ac., Hyos., Ign., Lach., Nux-v., Op., Ph-ac., Puls., Raph., Staph., Stram.
LACHESIS and HYOS are 3 marks drugs for this symptom. Only APIS, CENCHRIS, and LACHESIS are ‘animal’ drugs’. Anan, Camph, Coff, Hyos, Ign, Nux, Opium, Puls, Raph, Staph and Stram are ‘plant remedies’. Calc P, Calc S, Gall ac and Phos ac are mineral drugs.
We have to eliminate HYOS when searching a similimum for a person with jealousy as a prominent symptom, if we follow Sankaran method!
Homeopathic materia medica or repertory does not support Sankaran’s theory that persons with ‘vital sensation’ of ‘jealousy’ would require ‘animal drugs’ only.
Sankaran says LACK OF SELF CONFIDENCE indicates a vital sensation of ‘structural consciousness’, which is a MINERAL quality. Only ‘mineral drugs’ have to be considered for patients exhibiting ‘vital sensation of LACK OF SELF CONFIDENCE.
See this rubric in kent repertory:
[Kent]Mind : CONFIDENCE, want of self:- Agn., Alum., Anac., Anan., Ang., Arg-n., Aur., Bar-c., Bell., Bry., Calc., Canth., Carb-an., Carb-v., Caust., Chin., Chlor., Dros., Gels., Hyos., Ign., Iod., Kali-c., Kali-n., Kali-s., Lac-c., Lach., Lyc., Merc., Mur-ac., Nat-c., Nat-m., Nit-ac., Nux-v., Olnd., Op., Pall., Phos., Plb., Puls., Ran-b., Rhus-t., Ruta., Sil., Stram., Sul-ac., Sulph., Tab., Ther., Verb., Viol-t., Zinc.
Only ANACARDIUM is 3 marks drug for this symptom. It is a PLANT REMEDY!
24 drugs- Agnus, Anac, Anan, Ang, Bell, Bry, Carb v, China, Dros, Gels, Hyos, Ign, Lyc, Nux V, Oleand, Opium, Puls, Ran b, Rhus t, Ruta, Stram, Tab, Verb and Viol t are PLANT REMEDIES.
5 drugs- Canth, Carb an, Lac can, Lach and Ther are ANIMAL DRUGS.
23 drugs- Alum, Arg Nit, Aur, Bar c, Calc, Caust, Chlor, Iod, Kali c, Kali n, Kali s, Merc, Mur ac, Nat c, Nat m, Nit ac, Pall, Phos, Plumb, Sil, Sul ac, Sul and Zinc are MINERAL DRUGS.
Materia medica or repertories no way justify Sankaran’s theory that LACK OF SELF CONFIDENCE would require only MINERAL REMEDIES. How can a person claiming to be homeopath make a theory and method of practice totally ignoring our whole materia medica and drug proving?
Sankaran’s reputation, experience or vast followings should not prevent us from asking genuine questions. We need answers for these questions, since Sankaran claims to be a homeopath.
Sankaran’s method will result in gravely disabled in incapacitated homeopathic practice, preventing homeopaths from utilizing the unlimited potentials of our materia medica.
Obviously, the basic dogma of ‘sensations-kingdom’ relationship on which ‘Sankaran’s method’ is built up lacks the support of logic or materia medica.
Anybody can make any theories. But it is wrong to say it is homeopathy.
As part of our mission to evolve and promote scientific homeopathy, we have to discuss and analyse various existing theories about homeopathy . We have to analyse and expose each and every ideas, concepts and methods in homeopathy that hinder scientific transformation of homeopathy.
Without criticizing and exposing wrong ideas and wrong practices, we cannot evolve and promote right ideas and right practices in homeopathy.
Some friends have expressed their apprehension that criticizing wrong theories and practices happening in homeopathy in public will harm the good will and reputation of our community and our therapeutic system.
I do not subscribe to that view. All these ‘wrong things’ in homeopathy are done and promoted by their propagators in public, without any concern about the harm they are doing, through articles, books, interviews and seminars all over the world, making homeopathy a topic of unending mockery before the scientific community. All these things are already known to general public better than homeopaths themselves.
These people have already done enough damage to homeopathy through their unscientific theories and nonsense practices. They supply arms and ammunition to skeptics to attack homeopathy.
If homeopathic community continue let these people go like this, we cannot even dream about making homeopathy a scientific medical system, and get it recognized as such even in a far distant future.
It may help in creating an aura around the teacher, which would attract people to seminars. That is not a silly thing, where money matters above homeopathy!
In his Homeopathic Links interview, Vithoulkas says: “Sankaran alone has done more harm to homeopathy than all the enemies of homeopathy together.”
Andre Saine writes on his website: “Sankaran demonstrated several basic errors of methodology and reasoning in his example of how he ‘discovers’ a remedy”
How would the followers of Sankaran respond to these statements?
Collect all mentals, physical generals and particular symptoms of your patient, with all qualifications such as causations, sensations, locations, modalities and concomitants. Then grade the symptoms into uncommon, common, mental, physical general and particulars. Then repertorize. Compare the materia medica of drugs coming top in repertorization, and decide a similimum. That is the simple way of homeopathic practice- and the most successful way.
If a drug is similimum according to totality of symptoms, it does not matter whether that drug belongs to animal, mineral or plant kingdoms. It does not matter to which ‘sub kingdom’ or ‘family’ the drug belongs. Such knowledge does not make any difference in our similimum.
Chandran Nambiar. Kerala
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