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The Works of Oliver Wendell Holmes: An Index of the Project Gutenberg Editions
These Essays are old enough now to go alone without staff or crutch in the shape of Prefaces. A very few words may be a convenience to the reader who takes up the book and wishes to know what he is likely to find in it. Homoeopathy has proved lucrative, and so long as it continues to be so will surely exist,as surely as astrology, palmistry, and other methods of getting a living out of the weakness and credulity of mankind and womankind. Though it has no pretensions to be considered as belonging among the sciences, it may be looked upon by a scientific man as a curious object of study among the vagaries of the human mind. Its influence for good or the contrary may be made a matter of calm investigation. I have studied it in the Essay before the reader, under the aspect of an extravagant and purely imaginative creation of its founder. Since that first essay was written, nearly half a century ago, we have all had a chance to witness its practical working. Two opposite inferences may be drawn from its doctrines and practice. The first is that which is accepted by its disciples. This is that all diseases are cured by drugs. The opposite conclusion is drawn by a much larger number of persons. As they see that patients are very commonly getting well under treatment by infinitesimal drugging, which they consider equivalent to no medication at all, they come to disbelieve in every form of drugging and put their whole trust in nature. Thus experience, has shown that the dealers in this preposterous system of pseudo-therapeutics have cooperated with the wiser class of practitioners in breaking up the system of over-dosing and over-drugging which has been one of the standing reproaches of medical practice. While keeping up the miserable delusion that diseases were all to be cured by drugging, Homoeopathy has been unintentionally showing that they would very generally get well without any drugging at all. In the mean time the newer doctrines of the mind cure, the faith cure, and the rest are encroaching on the territory so long monopolized by that most ingenious of the pseudo-sciences. It would not be surprising if its whole ground should be taken possession of by these new claimants with their flattering appeals to the imaginative class of persons open to such attacks. Similia similabus may prove fatally true for once, if Homoeopathy is killed out by its new-born rivals. ......Buy Now (To Read More)
Ebook Number: 28747
Author: Holmes, Oliver Wendell
Release Date: May 10, 2009
Editor: Widger, David, 1932-
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