THE PHILOSOPHY OF HEALING

Whatever confidence the representatives of the various schools of materia medica may have in the alleged benefit to be derived from the remedies on which they rely, they must be entirely agreed that they have no philosophy of the relation of means to ends. So far as the observation and classification of the data of human experience is concerned, their procedure may be regarded as scientific, but so far as their claim of causal relation is concerned it manifestly has no rationale.

The pure materialist may prescribe a given drug for a given disease, and be able to cite evidence in proof that relief has attended its use under similar symptomatic conditions, but if asked how the particles of matter taken into the system are able to locate the inflamed part or inactive gland, to determine the nature of its disease, and so to influence it as to bring about a normal adjustment of things,—respecting all this he has no understanding; no, not even the vaguest theory. He may say that he doesn't need any philosophy; that all he wants is a practical working scheme which is based on empirical investigation, but in so saying he certainly abrogates all claim that his scheme is a science.

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LETTERS TO OUR LEADER
June 19, 1909
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