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Homeopathy and the City: Biological Welfare

by Elizabeth Kaye(more info)

listed in homeopathy, originally published in issue 131 - January 2007

London. September 2001. I look up whenever a plane flies overhead. Just to check. People are now dying from inhaling anthrax in the post-room. There is the expectation of attack, not only from the sky but from deadly diseases unleashed into the atmosphere.

In my private practice, I have a few patients who work in the City. Since the Twin Towers came down, they have been the most affected. They go about the daily business of rearranging money in a fog of fear. It sits in the consulting room with us. I ask it to speak.

“I just keep thinking, will I be next? Is it going to happen today?”

“I don’t want to get up, let alone go to work. I’m a sitting duck.”

“How can I concentrate on my job when I feel as if I could be hurtling through the sky, on fire, at any moment.”

“I sit on the Tube waiting to be gassed.”

“I don’t want to die because I work in a bank.”

As I listen, I check myself for signs of contagion. Maybe it is my low-rise job, my natural perversity, or maybe I am dangerously out of touch with reality, but I don’t seem to have any plans for getting under the blankets with them. Okay, there’s the looking up whenever a plane flies overhead thing, but I can put that down to curiosity, can’t I? The truth is I am just not as vulnerable as they are. What they need is protection.

Kate, my friend and fellow Homeopath, calls to compare notes. She is hearing the same thing from her patients. She’s had an idea.

“We make a remedy from Homeopathic anthrax, label it Biological Welfare and give it to them to put in their pockets.”

“Like a Talisman?”

“Exactly.”

“Great. Can you come up with something to deflect fear of planes?”

“Airborne assault? Not really our field is it, unless you’re talking wasps, bees….”

I look up anthrax in the Homeopathic Materia Medica. “It was first introduced as a remedy by Lux the Veterinarian, long before the experiments of Pasteur. The potentised virus is the best remedy for the disease from which it is obtained.” Interestingly, among the mental symptoms listed is “Thinks she feels death approaching” and also “Disinclined to work”.

I need to explain. A potentised virus is another way of saying a Homeopathic remedy made originally from a disease. It may come as a surprise, to those of you who thought we just crushed up flower petals and added lots of water, that we can make a remedy from anything, literally anything at all. The most harmful chemical, the most sinister poison, the most disgusting matter, (rotting beef is one of my favourites), can be turned by the process of Homeopathic dilution and succusion into a curative medicine. How can this happen? Because, as Shakespeare said, “In poison there is physik”.

The mental symptoms are some of those recorded in clinical observations as a concomitant to the disease.

The Talisman idea works a treat. While we are at it, we add smallpox, leprosy and botulism to the anthrax, diluted to the thirtieth potency, which means it now contains the dynamic energy of the diseases, but any trace of the material substances disappeared several dilutions ago.

(We order this from the Homeopathic Pharmacy, Legal Departments, please note. We do not, I repeat, do not have any deadly diseases in our possession).

None of the patients ever get to take the remedy, because the biological warfare does not actually happen. But they all report a sense of comfort from knowing that, in the event, they could, possibly, DO SOMETHING to antidote the effects. The fog lifts. Life goes on.

London. March 2003. The Iraqis are bombed ‘in order to make the world a safer place’. I’m still refusing to be scared, figuring that the whole mess feeds on fear, and I do not want to be part of the meal. I notice that, among my patients at the Community Centre on the other side of town, not one person mentions a fear of terrorism. They don’t have time, life on the edge being a fully occupying force. The City types are on the phone again, though.

London. December 2004. The ‘War on Terror’ continues. We are warned repeatedly that the Capital is an inevitable target. But the emphasis has shifted away from biological weapons and back to bombs. The bottles of Biological Welfare are probably all either lost, broken or gathering dust at the back of a drawer.
London. July 2005. The inevitable happens. Four bombs explode and London closes down. I am at work when I hear the receptionist mumbling gravely about ‘serious fatalities’, whatever that means. I get a crackly call from my son’s teacher then the line goes dead. As I can’t get through to anyone on the landline, and all the mobile networks are down, I hurry home. There are no trains. In a taxi crawling along the Old Kent Road, I encounter a driver who tells me he never stops for blacks anymore. According to him, they are all the same and cause nothing but trouble.

“Do you really think this is the time to be looking for reasons to hate people,” I say to his back as he rants on. Exasperated, I ask him to stop the cab and I hop on an equally slow-moving bus. The passengers are all talking to each other in a concerned kind of way and it is interfering with my need to only have one thought right now, which is to get home. I slide off the bus and walk the last half mile through subdued streets which, although clogged with traffic, seem strangely quiet and echo my own sense of numb detachment from the reality of the news. Finally, I make it through the front door, grab the phone and ascertain that the two younger ones are being brought from school by a friend. The 17 year-old is still in bed, sleeping peacefully through a historic moment. Knowing I won’t relax until all my children are safely indoors, I distract myself by tidying up my workroom. As I pick up a pile of papers waiting to be filed, a photo flutters to the floor. It is a picture I tore from a newspaper in September 2001 and kept for some reason. A head and shoulders of Osama Bin Laden looking straight into the lens. It is blurry, probably enlarged from a telephoto with consequent loss of definition. He looks ethereal, insubstantial, as if he is no longer fully of this world. Reports at the time suggested his health was failing. Chronic kidney problems. This intrigues me greatly as the kidneys are particularly affected by fear. Think about it. Big fright – pee in your pants. That is the acute manifestation. To develop a chronic kidney disease one may have experienced repeated or continual fear. Terror, even? How ironic to imagine the great fear-monger of the age being himself a victim of the fog.

“What is it that frightens you, Osama?” I whisper. “Do you feel your edges blurring with the Almighty or are you scared that, in the final reckoning, you just won’t be considered righteous enough? Do you want to be a spectre forever, or do you long to be impaled upon your own truth?”

Surprisingly, the picture answers. It is not Osama’s voice, of course, I am not deluded, but a rumbling of consciousness. It says “Fear is the absence of Love. I am the result, not the cause. Your job, if you think you are up to it, is to open your heart and spread the disease of Love. Label it if you must, but please don’t expect it to fit in a bottle”.

I put the picture down gently and dial Kate’s number. I’ll see if she’s got any ideas.

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About Elizabeth Kaye

Elizabeth Kaye qualified as a homeopath in 1998 and works in London, both in private practice and as part of a team delivering low-cost complementary therapies through a publicly funded agency. She can be contacted on elizabethkaye@hotmail.co.uk

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